By David Gold

internation inspiration_egypt_02-02-12February 4 - London 2012 claim that they have kept their promise to reach 12 million children in 20 countries across the world as part of their International Inspiration programme which provides children worldwide with access to high quality sporting, play and educational opportunities.

Egypt was named as the 20th country to join International Inspiration, following recent launches in Ghana, Ethiopia and Tanzania.

International Inspiration is part of London 2012's promise to reach youngsters worldwide and to "connect them to the inspirational power of the Games".

London 2012 says that the promise to reach 12 million children was met ahead of schedule in July 2011.

The British Council hosted an event in Cairo where the announcement was made.

The event was attended by one of Britain's greatest Paralympians – Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, an ambassador of International Inspiration.

Other attendees including Egyptian representatives such as El Motaz Sonbol, secretary general of the Egyptian Olympic Committee and Dr Ashraf Marie of the Egyptian Paralympic Committee.

egypt ii_03-02-12
Sebastian Coe, the chairman of London 2012, said: "I'm thrilled to welcome Egypt as the 20th and final country to the International Inspiration programme.

"Our vision from the outset was to use the power of the Games to inspire change – engaging the youth of the world through sport.

"The work the programme will achieve in each country will allow us to reach out to thousands more children and young people and inspire them to go beyond their personal best."

Baroness Tanni added: "Sport is a powerful means of engaging young people and allowing them to channel their energy in a positive way.

"International Inspiration will give young people in Egypt the access to sport that I had growing up, that which inspired me to achieve things in life that I am proud of, including my Paralympic gold medals."

The charity received a further boost this week when Sir Keith Mills, the deputy chairman of London 2012, was selected as the chairman of the 2012 British Travel Industry Hall of Fame, and chose International Inspiration as his chosen charity.

"I am delighted to take on the role of the Hall of Fame charity chairman and through the generous support of the Hall of Fame dinner guests I hope to raise funds for this important charity," he said.

egypt riot_03-02-12
The selection of Egypt as the last country involved with the legacy programme comes at a time of political instability in the country, which has been volatile since the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak as their leader just over a year ago.

On Thursday (February 2) violence at a football match between Port Said outfit Al-Masry and Cairo giants Al-Ahli led to the death of 74 supporters with over a thousand injured, after fans and players of the latter were set upon.

Fans of the Cairo based outfit and their city rivals Zamalek subsequently joined together in a march on Tahrir Square on Thursday night calling for the overthrow of the ruling Army Council, while protests have also taken place in Suez.

The project is being delivered by the British Council, UNICEF and UK Sport.

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

Related stories
September 2011: Prince Edward takes International Inspiration to Uganda
July 2011: International Inspiration reaches target year ahead of schedule claims Coe
February 2011: Liz Nicholl - Being inspired by young people in Jordan
November 2010: Jackson thrills pupils with inspirational visit
September 2010: London 2012 is delivering on election promises claims Campbell