The HOC Gender Equality Commission awarded the athletes-parents in “Tokyo 2020”

The Hellenic Olympic Committee Gender Equality Commission awarded the athletes who were parents diuring the year of the Olympic Games “Tokyo 2020” in a very beautiful ceremony and within a warm family atmosphere.
Byron Kokkalanis (sailing), Alexis Ntanatsidis (judo), Voula Papachristou (athletics), Lefteris Petrounias (gymnastics), Emilia Tsoulfa (sailing), Costas Filippidis (track and field), Yiannis Fountoulis (polo), Evangelia Psarra (archery), received the prizes and allowances, together with their families.
The purpose of this beautiful event organized by the Hellenic Olympic Committee Gender Equality Commission is to make everyone realize that the sports career does not end with the creation of a family, fact that brings changes in everyday life but does not create insurmountable obstacles in the effort of being a champion.
Annamarie Phelps, British Olympic Association Vice Chairwoman and European Olympic Committees Equality, diversity and inclusion Commission Chair, was invited to the event, while the Deputy Minister of Sports, Lefteris Avgenakis, was also present.

In her speech Ms. Annamarie Phelps presented examples in sports where gender discrimination was evident and analyzed the initiatives taken by the Olympic movement for gender equality especially within the concept of being a high level athlete and becoming a parent. She stressed that decisive steps are still needed for the equal inclusion of women in sports and encouraged women to be involved in sports at all levels, whether as athletes or as coaches and executives. Following the speech, HOC President Spyros Capralos gave her a commemorative gift.
In his statement, the HOC & EOC President, and IOC member Spyros Capralos, among other things, pointed out: “In reality, the life of an athlete is not ordinary. The hours of training every day are many – if, of course, someone wants to be at a high level -. In fact, while preparing for Olympic Games, these hours increase even more, in order to reach the coveted qualification for the Olympic Games. Adding to this – the already difficult puzzle – having also the role of a parent, usually of young children, we urge you to realize what these athletes, we honor today, have achieved. So we want to express our admiration and support to these Athletes who manage to balance between an excellent sports career and the fulfillment of family obligations. These athletes have a special place in our hearts!”
 After thanking Ms Annamarie Phelps for accepting the invitation, the President of the HOC Gender Equality Commission, Vassiliki Millousi, said: “I consider all athletes, female and male, who daily give their lives to achieve their big goal to be amazing. But I consider even more amazing the female athletes and the athlete parents who lead an “elite athletes’” life alongside with the important role of supporting their family.”
As a woman, mother, wife and athlete, I want to congratulate all of you who play all these roles simultaneously and spread this important message of parentship among the society: ‘With the creation of a family, goals and dreams do not stop, on the contrary, they become bigger and stronger in order to be the best example for your children.”
The Master of Ceremony of the event was the journalist Dora Pantelis. Additionally, the General Secretary of Sports Giorgos Mavrotas, the General Secretary of Demographic and Family Policy and Gender Equality Kalypso Goula, the President of the Greek Olympians and HOC Executive Board member Voula Kozomboli, the President of the Greek Olympic Winners Voula Zygouri, many Presidents and representatives of the National Federations, the Olympian Demosthenes Tabakos and the President of the Hellenic Paralympic Committee Giorgos Kapellakis.
From the Hellenic Olympic Committee, the Second Vice-President Stefanos Handakas, the President of the Marketing Commission Nikos Iatrou, the members Giorgos Karabetsos, Nikos Xylouris, Thomas Tokas, Fotis Kaimenakis, Thanasis Papageorgiou, Kostis Liaromatis and the HOC General Manager Yvette Kosmetatou were also present.