Draft has begun on code of ethics for coaches and athletes
Guyana Chronicle
November 24, 2002

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THE Women in Sport Working Group began working on a draft for a code of ethics for coaches and athletes during a seminar/workshop at the Carifesta Sports Complex yesterday.

Delivering the address at the opening, Minister of Sport Gail Teixeira said coaches must be involved to further women’s interest in sport.

“To push women in sport, we have to deal with the coaches,” Minister Teixeira.

The minister pointed out that one of the difficulties in having women involved in sport was that many of the coaches are men who were reluctant to coach women because of perceived problems with them.

However, there must be systems in place that will protect both boys and girls involved in sport.

“There must be a coaches’ code of conduct which must be non-negotiable,” Minister Teixeira said.

Minister Teixeira pointed out that coaches play a critical part in the lives of young people because they are exposed to the aspect of athletes’ life and sometimes they do not know how to deal with the issues.

Hence, the seminar for coaches who needed to know the biological and other differences between boys and girls and what was required to deal with training each sex.

The minister identified nutrition as being an important component in an athlete’s development, hence the ministry, in collaboration with the Caribbean Food & Nutrition Institute, will be hosting a seminar for coaches on nutritional requirements, sometime in the first quarter of next year.

Minister Teixeira pointed out that another important aspect of development was having a national coaches’ association to bring together coaches from the various disciplines.

There was a lapse in implementing the body after initial work was done and now there is need to pilot through its establishment.

Giving a background of the women’s working group, the minister disclosed that the voluntary advisory body was set up after Guyana signed the Declaration in March 2000.

Since then, the group has staged two cavalcades of sport over the past two years, and a women’s walk.

The group has been working to encourage national associations to include programmes for women.

One concrete result was the establishment of a women’s cricket association that has since put teams back into competition and even hosted the West Indies Women’s Cricket Championships.

“It shows we’re on the right path,” Minister Teixeira declared.

The minister lauded the efforts in netball, weightlifting and bodybuilding to involve women.

Work is ongoing in trying to influence the volleyball fraternity to include women because the sport was expanding.

But Minister Teixeira said one of the major problems was that national associations did not have developmental programmes.

However, shortly, national associations will be required to have programmes for women, youths and disabled persons.

In the seminar/workshop, Dr Jennifer Basdeo-Green dealt with Developmental Changes - Its Effects on the Female Athlete.

Dr Monica Benn focused on Strength & Flexibility Training for Women and Vidyaratha Kissoon dealt with Recognition & Prevention of Sexual Abuse In Sport.

The Impact of HIV/AIDS in Sport was addressed by Dr Morris Edwards, and Jacqueline Williams dealt with Nutrition and Performance of the Female Athlete.

Some of the areas drafted in the code of behaviour for athletes are: respect for others, respect for self, respect for sport, respect for the organisation and respect for property.

The coaches’ code of ethics focused on positive environment, fair play/equality, safety, respect and professional responsibilities.

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