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2021 GD Youth Link: the 3rd Guangdong International Youth Sports Dialogue held in Guangzhou

2021-09-29 10:16:03

President Xi Jinping pointed out, "Sports are an important indicator of social development and human progress, and a significant manifestation of overall national strength and the cultural advancement of a society". Sports is also a form of people to people exchanges that may touch one's heart and bring people together. The year 2020 witnessed sports events of national and international importance, like the Tokyo Olympics, the 14th National Games of China and the approaching 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics. Guangdong People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries(GPAFFC) attached great importance to friendly exchanges in youth sports with foreign countries and joined the Guangdong Youth Sports Federation as the co-host of the 3rd Guangdong International Youth Sports Dialogue. As one of the 2021 GD Youth Link serial, a brand activity of the GPAFFC since 2018, the Sports Dialogue invited Olympic champions, high school and college students, experts in sports, educators from the United States, Japan and China, as well as an emergerncy physcian of the Beijing Winter Olympics to discuss and exchange views on “Faster, Higher, Stronger, Together---Youth Sports Development and Safety" online and offline. Wang Xunzhang, chairman of the Guangdong Overseas Returned Scholars Association and former vice chairman of CPPCC Guangdong Committee, Chen Guangjun, deputy general director of the Foreign Affairs Office of Guangdong People's Government and vice chairman of the GPAFFC, Gao Jingping, chairman of the Guangdong Youth Sports Federation and vice chairman of the Chinese Rowing Association also attended the dialogue and addressed the meeting.

"Safety stays first in playing sports. Young people come first ininternational exchanges."

Wang Xunzhang pointed out that the theme of this dialogue -"Youth Sports Development and Sports Safety"- was well timed. He hoped international cooperation in sports injury prevention and emergency treatment may help more young students enjoy sports. Chen Guangjun said that the dialogue helped to bridge practitioners and educators from Guangdong and other countries in sport safety, sport science and sport accessibility, which diversifed the province’s international youth exchanges. Gao Jingping emphasised that the sports safety was essential to the better development of the youth sports. She called on young people of all nationalities in Guangdong to learn how to exercise correctly and called for public awareness in sports protection. Professor Zhong Shizhen, academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, welcomed the staging of the dialogue, with his personal endorsement- "Safety stays first in playing sports. Young people come first in international exchanges."

During the live connection, Jamie Zaninovich, vice chairman and chief operating officer of the Pacific 12 University Sports League (PAC-12), said that he looked forward to revisiting China, keeping up the youth sports exchanges and cooperation between the two countries. Mr. Toda Hirohisa, an overseas consul member of GPAFFC and the chairman of the Japan Rhythm Dance Federation, spoke on "Related measures on Japan's youth sports and the importance of sports exchanges" and had high expectations on restarting the China, Japan and South Korea Youth Aerobics Competition next year. John Tanner, head coach of the women’s water polo team at Standford University, and winner of the 2020 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee College Coach, gave a speech over the topic, "Sports and Academic Balance". Dr. Fu Yan, a member of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics skiing medical protection team, was invited by GPAFFC thanks to the support from the CPAFFC, to share the story of China’s first medical group specialized in skiing injury treatment and cheer for the upcoming Beijing Winter Olympics.

Youth Dialogue Focuses on Sports, China and Foreign Countries Work Together to Set Standards

Xian Dongmei,two-time Women’s Judo Olympic Games champion and chairman of the Chinese Judo Association,  Chen Bin,Southern Medical University professor, Zhang Jiewen, Olympic champion and Sun Yat-sen University associate professor,Killian Hollo,International Sports Health Foundation (Singapore) executive director, He Peizhang, Arizona State University American football team member, Dean Bryant, sports teacher of Guangzhou ISA School, Olivia Zoppa, Jinyao Zhang DeSandies, international students studing in Guangzhou and other Chinese and foreign representatives also participated in the dialogue and shared their expertise or personal experiences.

With a view to raising public awareness on the safety and physical health of the youth, the Organizing Committee joined hands with professionals and international consultants and issued the "Safety Proposal for Guangdong Youth Sports", advocating for "safe sports, healthy sports, smart sports, happy sports, and green sports", and launched the Youth Sports Injury Emergency Response Protocols (National Group Standard). This protocol was drafted jointly by experts at home and abroad in sports medicine and sports industry, an attempt for Guangdong to carry out international cooperation in youth sports managment.

Media coverage hotspots

Media coverage of the dialogue included the warm-up pre-release, live coverage on wechat, tiktok and photo coverage on weibo as well as exclusive online interviews for journalists. Videos of the dialogue can also be found on Bilibili uploaded by the organzing committee.  Voice of the Greater Bay Area Channel of China Central Radio, Nanfang Daily, Yangcheng Evening News, China News Service, Guangzhou Daily, Phoenix News, Ta Kung Pao, and Wen Wei Po. covered the event from variou perspectives, like "Experts gathered for sports in Yangcheng", "Proud! Guangdong Shaoguan Youth, first Chinese to board the American college football field and score", “Smart sports for strong body", "Youth Sports Injury Emergency Treatment Procedures Released", etc.These multi-angel insights into the Dialogue and related hot topics, received positive responses and widespread attention.