The 2007 Australian Youth Olympic Festival took place from 17 – 21 January in Sydney, Australia. The five-day event drew over 1600 athletes competing in many of the venues built for the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. The Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) took the opportunity to launch its Athlete Outreach Program at this multi-sport, multi-national event.
“We were extremely pleased with the outcomes of our first Athlete Outreach Program,” said Tristan Salter, ASADA Strategic Deterrence Manager. “Having junior Australian and international athletes learn about anti-doping with ASADA experts and athlete ambassadors in a fun an interactive environment was another step forward for ASADA in the education of junior athletes in this country.”
ASADA developed banners and posters using WADA’s templates as a guide and also utilized the WADA Doping Quiz, co-branded with the ASADA logo as part of the activities. Athletes who visited the ASADA program were rewarded with a prize for correctly responding to most of the questions on the quiz.
“The folks at ASADA enthusiastically adapted the Athlete Outreach Model to suit their needs and initiated a program that gave over 600 future Olympians a better understanding of anti-doping,” said Stacy Spletzer, WADA’s Outreach and Athlete Programs Manager. “The success of ASADA’s first Outreach Program is a tribute to what can be done when organizations work together to raise awareness about anti-doping issues.”
ASADA also engaged the participation of Australian Olympians as athlete ambassadors to help promote the program.