December 13 - A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed by the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) and the United Nations on Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP) in an effort to use taekwondo as a vehicle to promote the common goals of sport-for-all and peace.
The agreement was signed by WTF President Chungwon Choue and the UN secretary general's special adviser on sport development and peace, Wilfired Lemke, on the opening day of the inaugural World Taekwondo Grand Prix here.
"The WTF has a very special relationship with the UNOSDP," said President Choue following the signing.
"We share many of the same values and we fully support the UNOSDP in their mission to support people around the world by providing them with opportunities to engage in sport.
"Taekwondo is more than a sport – it's a philosophy.
"Taekwondo teaches young people discipline, fair play and sportsmanship.
"Young athletes learn the importance of respecting one another whatever their nationality, race or gender.
"These values will not only help them to be a success in taekwondo but help them to contribute to society outside of the sport."
The partnership aims to use taekwondo as a tool to promote peace-building objectives, social inclusion and the rights of persons with a disability.
The WTF Peace Corps for Para-Taekwondo will be largely responsible for carrying out the work of the partnership but will also be supported through the WTF's involvement in the UNOSDP's Youth Leadership Programme (YLP).
It will not be the first time that the WTF has supported this programme with delegates being sent to Gwangju earlier this year to instruct youth leaders on how to teach taekwondo in a way that is socially inclusive and replicable in their community.
Under this new agreement, special adviser Lemke and the UNOSDP have agreed to offer the WTF the opportunity to send participants to the next YLP, whilst also offering to assist the WTF Peace Corps with promoting Para-Taekwondo.
Speaking at the signing, in response to President Choue's comments, Lemke added: "I''m proud to be here to sign this MoU (Memorandum of Understanding), or this agreement as I fell its more than an MoU.
"Taekwondo is an excellent partner for the UNOSDP.
"We look forward to collaborating with them in the future as we look to achieve the UN's Millennium Development Goals."
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