9 June 2011

Outreach success at world champs in Netherlands

WADA’s Outreach Model was used to excellent effect at two major sporting events in the Netherlands earlier this year.

Anti-Doping Authority Netherlands incorporated aspects of the model into their 100% Dope Free program at the world championships for track cycling in Apeldoorn in March, and two months later for table tennis in Rotterdam.

The turn-key program – provided at no cost to all WADA stakeholders – helped ‘Dopingautoriteit’ reach out to all athletes at both events, who responded favourably to the initiative.

Riders at the cycling championships were invited to show their support for clean sport by signing a personal statement against doping, an initiative that was taken up by 750 of the competitors.

“It’s self-evident that you must compete without doping,” said 100% Dope Free ambassador and eight-times world cycling champion Marianne Vos.

“If you deliberately take doping substances, then you do not belong here.”

Erik Duiven, head of education at Dopingautoriteit, was delighted with the impact of the organization’s program.

“It takes huge dedication to perform at the highest level - the athletes here have shown how it can be done without doping,” Duiven said during the cycling world championships.

“The best way to promote clean sport is by testing clean and by signing the anti-doping statement. That’s what the athletes have done.”

At the table tennis championships competitors’ statements were projected on to a giant screen, and prominent was one slogan penned by an athlete that read: “DO PING, not DOPING.”

The WADA Play True Quiz proved especially useful as it informed many of the players as to the dangers of unintentional doping.

“Athletes should be more aware of the risks, such as taking a contaminated food supplement,” added Duiven.

“It can lead to a positive test and a ban from the thing you love doing most.

“That’s why these initiatives are so important – they promote clean sport and also help prevent the unintentional use of doping substances.”