The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has announced that Worldwide Olympic Partner Panasonic has extended its support for the IOC Young Leaders Programme through to 2024. As part of the extension and as the programme’s founding partner, Panasonic will further support the IOC Young Leaders through different initiatives. The company will for example provide its creative and technological expertise, along with its network of influencers and ambassadors, to inspire the Young Leaders and equip them with the skills and tools they need to enhance their projects.
Panasonic’s collaboration with the IOC on the Young Leaders Programme underlines both organisations’ commitment to youth engagement and empowerment. It also demonstrates the IOC’s renewed approach to working more closely with the Worldwide Olympic Partners on purpose-led initiatives that use sport as a tool for social change.
“We are delighted that Panasonic is continuing its commitment to the IOC Young Leaders Programme and investing in the young generation,” said Timo Lumme, Managing Director of IOC Television and Marketing Services. “Thanks to Panasonic’s incredible support, we have been able to continually expand and develop this initiative, allowing us to engage and empower the next generation of sports leaders, who inspire us all with their commitment to creating positive change in their communities through the power of sport.”
“As a Worldwide Partner of the Olympic Games since 1987, and of the Paralympic Games since 2014, we at Panasonic truly believe in sharing the passion and spirit of the Olympic Movement, which aims to achieve world peace through sport,” said Yoshiro Morii, Executive Officer and Director of the Groupwide Brand Strategy Division at Panasonic Corporation. “The IOC Young Leaders Programme represents exactly such a goal of inspiring passion for positive change among youth to create a more ideal society and empower younger generations. It was therefore a natural choice for us to extend our partnership with the IOC on such a wonderful programme and continue to share the passion and inspiration of various young talents around the globe to help build a better world – the same way Panasonic aims to solve social issues through various technological innovations.”
The IOC Young Leaders Programme
Launched in 2016, the IOC Young Leaders Programme empowers young people to leverage the power of sport to make a positive difference in their communities. So far, with the support of seed-funding from the IOC and a network of mentors, these inspiring young people have delivered over 116 sport-led projects in communities across the globe, promoting themes such as education, social inclusion, sustainability and well-being, and directly benefitting more than 30,000 people.
Previously known as the IOC Young Change-Makers Programme, the initiative was renamed in 2019 to reflect the increasingly important role these young people are playing at the heart of the Olympic Movement, with the Young Leaders also attending international events and conferences to spread the message that sport can be used for good across society. In addition, 18 IOC Young Leaders serve as IOC commission members, reinforcing the position of young people in decision-making on the future of sport.
In February, the latest 25 Young Leaders were selected for the new edition of the programme, which has been revamped to ensure that each participant is given the tools, resources and opportunities they need to truly reach their potential as a social entrepreneur.
The new edition will operate as an enhanced, four-year programme, with each participant receiving a total of CHF 10,000 in seed-funding over the four years, supported by weekly learning modules and leadership opportunities.
Worldwide Olympic Partner Panasonic’s continued support
As a founding partner, Panasonic has supported the IOC Young Leaders Programme since 2017 and continues to do so by providing both additional funding to be used as grants and audiovisual equipment, and by producing impactful storytelling that promotes the programme and the Young Leaders themselves. In expanding the scope of the partnership, Panasonic also offers Young Leaders experience-based opportunities such as internships and virtual tours of Panasonic Centre, and skill-learning opportunities to enhance their storytelling capabilities.