Originally published in the December 2022 issue of Arete, the official publication of the Philippine Olympians Association
It will be the first of many. This was a shared decision that Akiko Thomson-Guevara OLY and I arrived at after seeing close to 200 sports leaders, coaches, Olympians, influencers, students and volunteers gathering in Palawan State University (PSU). From an online experience, our event made it on-site and face to face.
The OSLP event in Puerto Princesa City last October 20-22 anchored itself on the same key messages we drove at during our online session – Storytelling, Networking, and Systems Thinking. As a community of sports leaders, we reminded our summit participants of our power to shape our sports ecosystem through the stories and information we share and the networks and partnerships we create.
Seeing it unfold was a joy to me. I am grateful for the partnership we forged between the Philippine Olympians Association, Adrenaline Solutions, Mindanao Peace Games, and the host school, Palawan State University. Truly, so much can be done if we put the right people and groups together.
The event was made easier too by having the following individuals and organizations extend their support – Mayor Benjamin “Dinko” Bautista and the Pilipinas Super League; Atty. Albert Agra and the Pilipinas Obstacle Sports Federation; Atty. Margarita “Migs” Nograles and the PBA Party List; Mr. Jude Turcuato and Atty. Oscar “Jang” Moreno of MVP Sports Foundation; and Mr. Jeffrey Tarayao of One Meralco Foundation.
We are grateful as well to Mayor Lucil Bayron of the LGU of Puerto Princesa and to Governor V. Dennis M. Socrates of the Province of Palawan. Their all out support to the event made the OSLP summit an event to remember.
The OSLP event in Palawan was a convergence of many bringing with them different kinds of culture and experiences. Our speakers and participants were from the Philippines, Singapore, Canada, Austria, and Switzerland. Olympians interacted with sports directors, coaches, and athletes. Volunteers, students, and faculty of Palawan State University joined the daily talks and sharing of our speakers. It was enriching to also learn more from our invited speakers – Dr. Elesa Zehndorfer (on the value of Storytelling) and Coach Marc Dagenais (on the value of Networking) as keynote speakers were truly exceptional. Our spotlight speakers made it more insightful and interesting – Ms. Joy Reyes of the National Academy of Sports, Mr. Rocky Chan of Pilipinas Super League, Atty. Migs Nograles of PBA Partylist, Atty. Oca Moreno of the Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines, Mr. Monsour del Rosario of the Philippine Olympians Association, Ms. Kaye Samson of Special Olympics Pilipinas and Coach Francis “Kiko” Diaz of the Philippine Paralympic Committee.
We look forward to next year’s summit that will be once again hosted by PSU. However, we will build once again the OSLP tribe through the conduct of our online batches that start on January 21 (OSLP batch 9). More Olympians will be able to share their stories in sports and more coaches and leaders will get the opportunity to learn from it and, at the same time, widen their perspectives and reach in Philippine sports.
Be part of the OSLP network. Be an OSLPian.
About the writer: Coach Noli Ayo started the OSLP with POA President, Ms. Akiko Thomson-Guevara OLY. He is currently the VP for Sports and Education Program of Adrenaline Solutions. He plays two important roles in the sports community of Mindanao – as a Consultant of the Bangsamoro Sports Commission and as Convener of the Mindanao Peace Games. He recently wrote the book, “Mindanao Peace Games: Kalaro Kaibigan, Kasama” that is available via Amazon