JAAA presidential candidate Quarrie lays out plan that targets athletes, coaches developmentSaturday, October 24, 2020
BY PAUL A REID
SHOULD he be elected president of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) at next month's annual general meeting (AGM), Olympic Games gold medallist Donald Quarrie says athletes and coaches would be the focus of his administration.
Speaking with the Jamaica Observer this week, Quarrie said included in his manifesto were plans to concentrate on the needs of both the junior and senior athletes as well as ensuring that there were more courses for coaches to upgrade their skills, at the expense of the federation.
Quarrie said he also planned to increase the relationship with corporate Jamaica, which he said “provides ongoing funding for key programmes that impact our athletes, coaches and officials”.
The Montreal Olympics 200m champion and former 200m national record holder is going up against veteran administrator Garth Gayle, the general secretary of the JAAA, to replace Dr Warren Blake at the helm of the track and field federation during the AGM set for late November.
Quarrie, who is based in Los Angeles, California, said his priority if he gets the job would be to “reintroduce the national training programme in partnership with Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)” – an initiative he thinks would strengthen the national programme.
“We will have training sessions, for selected upcoming athletes, with some of our specialist coaches after the ISSA national high schools Boys' and Girls' Champs. We will assist with nutrition, along with needed physio and massage therapy. We will also provide for remedial classes, if needed, and also assist with their preparation for SAT exams,” Quarrie shared.
For seniors, he said plans were for them to “have the resources to succeed in competitions nationally, regionally and internationally”, and said the JAAA would be “assisting with travel expenses to some competitions, assisting with nutrition, along with needed physio and massage therapy”.
Coaches, he went on, will be crucial to the development of the athletes, both juniors or seniors.
“We want to ensure that our coaches are trained to become proficient at the highest level, as stipulated by NACAC and World Athletics,” said the JAAA presidential candidate.
To do this, Quarrie said any administration he leads would “establish a local programme that provides more coaches with the opportunities to attend seminars in Jamaica that will be conducted by NACAC or World Athletics, at our cost”.
There is a need, he claims, “for more corporate partners with a corporate sponsorship programme”, which will provide ongoing funding for key programmes that impact “our athletes, coaches and officials”.
“For example, ensuring that more schools have equipment that assist them in their development – and this will increase our relevance because it is providing more consistent opportunities for our athletes, coaches and officials,” Quarrie concluded.
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