Posted by Editoress on 08/2/12
Right To Play is thrilled to announce that Olympian and humanitarian, Clara Hughes has joined its International Board of Directors. A six-time Olympic medalist in cycling and speed skating; Clara is the only athlete in history to win multiple medals in both the Summer and Winter Games. The announcement is made following Clara’s fifth place finish in her last Olympic race in the Individual Time Trial for Cycling.
Right To Play is a global organization that uses the transformative power of play to educate and empower children facing adversity. Clara joins Right To Play’s list of esteemed International Board Members after many years as an Athlete Ambassador, former Co-Chair of the Canadian Advisory Board and advocate of the organization.
“Clara brings unparalleled passion to the organization,” said Right To Play President and CEO Johann Koss. “She possesses an intimate understanding of the organization and has served as inspiration to the many children she has encountered throughout her travels to our programs. Her sense of sportsmanship, integrity and determination to promote the positive attributes of sport are a perfect fit with Right To Play and are the foundation for the Sport for Development movement.”
After her incredible gold medal win in Turin during the 2006 Winter Games, Clara donated $10,000 of her personal savings to the organization, and challenged Canadian businesses and individuals to match her donation or to give what they could. Clara’s challenge sparked awareness for Right To Play across Canada and resulted in donations in excess of $450,000 in support of Right To Play’s sport and play programs across Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.
“I firmly believe in what Right To Play does,” said Clara Hughes. “I have witnessed the benefit of sport and play first hand and from personal experience how important it is for kids to have sport as an outlet for energy, anger and even fear. Right To Play recognizes this too, but does even more to ensure that children around the world have the opportunity to learn critical life skills that will set them on a more positive life path.”
Clara’s first trip to visit Right To Play programs was to Ethiopia in 2006. She has since visited programs in Ghana, Rwanda and the Middle East. Most recently, Clara travelled to Mali with fellow-Olympian Adam van Koeverden in October 2011 to visit Right To Play’s programs there. Upon return to Canada, the pair spearheaded a unique holiday fundraising campaign for the organization.
Clara is an Officer of the Order of Canada and a Member of the Order of Manitoba, holds honorary doctorates from various Canadian Universities and has been awarded the International Olympic Committee’s prestigious ‘Sport and the Community’ award for her commitment to promoting the values of sport and play around the world.
Courtesy Right To Play
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