Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Unavailability of finances hampering Long Term Athlete Development framework

Financial shortages are hampering the adaptation and implementation of Botswana’s Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD) framework.

The LTAD, viewed as a long term solution to sport development in the country, was handed to the Minister of Sport, Youth and Culture, Shaw Kgathi, in February this year.

Accepting the framework, Kgathi had advised sport codes to adapt and use the LTAD framework, and not to ‘let it rot in the shelves,’ something which may happen should the sporting codes continue to struggle getting necessary finances.

Speaking in an interview, Tuelo Serufho, the Chief Executive Officer of Botswana National Olympic Committee (BNOC), the committee which commissioned the formation of the framework, said the adaptation and implementation of the framework will take a long time to be done if necessary finances are not found by sporting codes.

“The LTAD is a generic framework and codes have to adapt it according to their specific developmental needs. The challenge facing the sporting codes is that they now have to adapt the national framework and make their own LTAD’s, which costs money and currently, sporting codes do not have the financial capacity to carry it out,” the BNOC CEO said.

Save for Judo and Golf, which have made their own development frameworks before the national framework was formalised, Serufho says the BNOC does not expect any other code to have completed their adaptation and implementation of the LTAD by the end of this year.

“Our wish was to have sporting codes having adapted the frameworks by 2012 so that we can start implementation by then. All this will, however, depend on whether we have enough financial muscle to carry out the implementation,” the BNOC CEO added.

According to Serufho, the implementation will also depend on the capability and capacity of each sporting code to carry out such a plan. He says, as the BNOC, they will help their affiliates to carry out the implementation plan but they will do this looking at the capacity of different sporting codes to decide who to help first.

While saying some components of the LTAD can be implemented immediately, the BNOC CEO says most of the LTAD will need time and resources, both financial and human, to be implemented and this will take some time.

He further added that it will also take time for the LTAD to bear fruit, as it takes 8 ÔÇô 10 years to develop an Olympic athlete. He says he expects the programmes’ impact to be less leading to Rio 2016 Olympics but he expects more impact to be felt beyond then.

Botswana’s LTAD was drawn by Dr Peter Davies, whose company, Sports Performance Management (SPM), had won the tender to draft it after an open bid.

The framework is said to have been adapted from the Canadian LTAD model, which is regarded as the founding LTAD and Botswana is the only country, besides South Africa, in the continent to have such a framework.

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