A group of 30 young reporters were given a thorough introduction to the issue of doping in sport by a WADA representative during a training course run by the Association internationale de la presse sportive (AIPS) in Azerbaijan.
The three-hour anti-doping session was part of the AIPS Young Reporters program held at the FIFA Women’s U/17 World Cup in Baku, and included a presentation from WADA followed by a lengthy question-and-answer session on doping in sport.
The presentation by WADA’s Senior Manager Media Relations and Communications, Terence O’Rorke, included details on the history of WADA, its mandate and mission, the World Anti-Doping Code and List of Prohibited Substances and Methods, along with details on the Athlete Biological Passport, Anti-Doping Administration and Management System, and the current challenges faced by the anti-doping community.
Following the presentation, the young reporters were given the opportunity to ask questions to Mr. O’Rorke, as well as AIPS President Gianni Merlo and course supervisor Keir Radnedge, two of the most experienced sports reporters in Europe.
"Educating young sports journalists in the ways of WADA is probably much like educating young athletes: the sooner the better for them to know and understand the whys and wherefores of keeping sport clean,” explained Mr Radnedge.
"In the case of athletes, it's for honest competition - and in the case of young reporters it all serves the cause and need and demand for ethical journalism.
"It also helps having such a tutor who knows his subject - the devil doesn't have to have all the best tunes."
It was the second time WADA has addressed students of the program – its inaugural participation was in Shenzhen, China in 2011 – following a partnership WADA has with AIPS to ‘educate’ journalists at the forefront of their careers.