Talk.France was offered the unique opportunity to take part in the 2nd Imagine Peace Youth Camp that took place in the last week of July 2016 at the International Olympic Academy. This institution is based in the heart of Olympic traditions, in Archea Olympia. Also known as Ancient Olympia, this place was the home of the very first Ancient Olympic Games in 776 BC and is now an world-known archeological site.
During one week, youngsters and youth workers from the whole world were gathered to celebrate Olympic Values and Peacebuilding, right before the start of the Rio Olympic Games. This Youth Camp was organized for the 2nd time by the International Olympic Truce Center in cooperation with the British Council Greece and with the support of the United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP).
Talk.France has always believed in the power of sports in intercultural and social dialogue. Our current aim is to use innovative medium to break the cultural divide and language barrier to connect people and foster intercultural understanding. Sport is actually one of the most effective tool to achieve such aim.
Thanks to this Youth Camp, Talk.France was introduced to more inclusive sports and notably to the world of paralympics with the great Youth Trainer Elias Mastoras from Thessaloniki. During the camp, we had the chance to experience blind football, wheelchair volleyball and introduced alternative inclusive rules to mainstream sports such as basketball. These experiences rose awareness among all the participants and gave an even brighter sense to the concept of “team spirit”.
Thanks to the International Olympic Truce Center, in many of our lectures and workshops, we were introduced to the idea of Olympism and Olympic Truce.
The Olympic Truce is a tradition originating from Ancient Greece that dates back to 8th century BC. A Truce (Ancient Greek: ékécheiria, meaning “laying down of arms”) was announced before and during the Olympic Games to ensure the host city state (Elis) was not attacked and athletes and spectators could travel safely to the Games and peacefully return to their respective countries.
A modern Declaration of the Olympic Truce was signed on April 20th, 2016 by the Mayors of Ancient Olympia, Ilida and Sparta. It was then co-signed by the President of the Hellenic Republic, HE Prokopis Pavlopoulos, the President of the International Olympic Committee, Dr. Thomas Bach, and other prominent personalities, figures and organizations of international, regional and national standing.
Everyone is invited to joint he movement online. Here is the link to sign the petition : Support Olympic Truce here !
The modern Olympic Games as we know them today were introduced by Pierre de Coubertin in the beginning of the 20th Century. Inspired by the Ancient Greece culture of constant improvement of physical and intellectual condition of the human, Pierre de Coubertin revived the notion of Olympism and its values to the modern times. The Olympic values, namely Excellence, Friendship, Respect, Courage, Determination, Equality and Inspiration are all serving a universal project of peace that can be obtained in sports, sports culture and international sports events.
Talk.France would like to thank all organizers of this Camp which happened to be a really unique experience that has broaden our idea or Peacebuilding and inspires us so much for our future project !