World weightlifting governing body, the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) has allocated a whooping $500,000 to member federations in a bid to help them deal with the financial challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic. IWF in a release made available to Catholic Herald Sports noted that the all her affiliates, including the Nigeria Weightlifting Federation (NWF) can access the fund.
The release stressed that following consultation with the IOC, the IWF has also been able to assure members that no advance payment will be needed against revenue anticipated from Tokyo 2020. Since letting member federations know of the opportunity to apply for additional resources, the IWF has received more than 130 applications for additional development funding, demonstrating the extent to which extra help is needed and the extent to which it will be welcomed.
The IWF’s 2020 Development Programme had initially been established to fund seminars and equipment. Following the significant increase in funding made available, that scope has been expanded to cover event support and expenses related to COVID-19. The revised scope includes elements that will have a direct beneficial impact for athletes, including support for flights and accommodation in order to attend IWF-sanctioned competitions. In order to be eligible for development funding, IWF member federations must complete a global survey and provide a budget together with audited financial statements.
During the pandemic, the IWF is sending a strong message for athletes to stay at home and to find new ways to stay strong while avoiding public places. The Development and Education Commission alongside the Technical, Medical and Coaching and Research Committees is working to release useful content that keeps weightlifters and fans engaged during this difficult period, including explanatory videos of the IWF Technical and Competition Rules & Regulations, home training tips, explanation about the importance of social distancing and positive messages of Member Federations and their lifters.