The Barbados Olympic Association (BOA) Inc. has developed a new funding regime to assist athletes and is investing approximately $1.6 million in direct athlete funding for 2022.
The announcement came during the first in-person press conference since 2020, held at the Olympic Centre, where it was also stated that the Annual Athlete Funding Subsidy Program will continue for the new 2021 to 2024 Olympic quadrennial.
Vice President and the Chair of the Allocations and Funding Commission, Cameron Burke, disclosed that this increased investment will help with the restart of sporting activities and preparation for Paris 2024. He stated that further funding would be allocated for competitions as required. He added the funding program takes into consideration individual athletes and National Federations.
“I want to assure all that the BOA is extremely excited and confident of successfully maintaining this initiative, while at the same time working assiduously to attract additional funding for our new Road to Paris 2024 Program and other segments of our annual funding subsidy”.
The BOA is committed to improving athletic performances as it strives to strengthen relationships with the National Federations and the athletes. This will be achieved through a performance-based program, and athletes will be expected to maintain satisfactory performances and compliance with other applicable conditions.
“To facilitate this initiative, the BOA has allocated the sum of $960,000 of which 19 percent will represent the contribution from Olympic Solidarity. These funds will be disbursed among 12 athletes identified and approved by their National Federations and the BOA. This initial investment in these successful athletes will be for the period January 1 to December 31, 2022”.
The 12 successful athletes are – Athletics -Tia Adana Belle, Akela Jones, Sade Williams, Shane Brathwaite, Mario Burke, Tristan Evelyn and Jonathan Jones. Boxing - Jabali Breedy; Swimming - Danielle Titus; Triathlon - Mathew Wright; Cycling - Amber Joseph and Surfing Chelsea Tuach. Five of these athletes - Tia Adana Belle, Akela Jones, Sade Williams, Amber Joseph and Chelsea Tuach are also recipients of Olympic Solidarity Scholarships.
In the other categories of athlete funding, funds for disbursement have been allocated as follows - High Performance $150,000, Developing $205,000 and Emerging $340,000.
There are five athletes in the High Performance category - Sonia Gaskin, Athletics; Kimberley Gittens, Boxing; Jack Kirby, Swimming; Josh Burke, Surfing and Darian King, Tennis.
There are another 27 athletes in the Developing category. In Archery - Charlene Goddard; Athletics - Jaquone Hoyte, Michael Nicholls, Burkheart Ellis, Kuron Griffith and Miquel Nicolas; Chess - Hannah Wilson, Justin Blackman, Martyn Castillo and Orlando Husbands; Cycling - Joshua Kelly; Equestrian - Monique Archer and Roberta Foster; Gymnastics - Erin Pinder; Golf - Emily Odwin; Judo - Asa Weithers; Sailing - Amy Cox; Shooting - Michelle Elliott; Squash - Meagan Best, Amanda Haywood and Khamal Cumberbatch; Surfing - Che Allan and Chelsea Roett; Swimming - Luis Weekes; Table Tennis - Tyrese Knight; Tennis - Hannah Chambers and Taekwondo - Askia Alleyne.
The Emerging category will fund the National Federation Emerging Athletes Junior Development Program. This program is open to athletes under the age of 23, and National Federations are invited to submit proposals to receive funding in various areas such as coaching or training and development.
The BOA launched a user-friendly athlete reporting application. Senior Operations Officer, Ryan Brathwaite said the app will allow secure storage of and access to athletes’ expense information, will provide a secure, user-friendly and easily accessible portal for athletes to catalog their income and expenses, and standardize the processes surrounding the collection of their expense information. He added the app would also monitor the trends and provide a platform for the effective mining of the data to create data redundancy to facilitate greater accountability.