Four Olympic Solidarity programmes, which support more than 1,600 athletes, have been extended through to the new dates of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
The four programmes covered by the extension are Olympic Scholarships for Athletes Tokyo 2020, Team Support Grants, Refugee Athlete Support and Olympic Games Subsidies.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC)'s Athletes Commission informed athletes of the news of the extensions of the programmes, which support more than 1,600 athletes from 185 National Olympic Committees (NOCs) yesterday.
“This is great news for the athletes around the world," said Kirsty Coventry, Chair of the IOC's Athletes Commission.
"It will ensure that the principles of solidarity and universality will be fully respected, and will not be affected by the postponement of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
“Athletes are at the heart of the Olympic Games and will never be left behind, even under these exceptional circumstances that we are currently in.”
The Olympic Solidarity programme was created more than 50 years ago, and aims to assist all NOCs, particularly those with the greatest need, with areas including athlete development and training for coaches and sports administrators, all while promoting the Olympic values.
Through its Refugee Athlete Support programme, Olympic Solidarity is currently helping 48 refugee athlete scholarship holders who are aiming to be selected as part of the IOC Refugee Olympic Team for Tokyo 2020.
At the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, 101 medals were awarded to athletes that were supported by Olympic scholarships consisting of 33 golds, 26 silvers and 42 bronze medals.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games were postponed last month because of the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic.
New dates for the Games- July 23 to August 8 2021 - were announced by the IOC and the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee on Monday (March 30).