Foreword IFF President WFC for Women 2003 in Switzerland
Distinguished guests and floorball friends,
On behalf of the International Floorball Federation (IFF) I have the pleasure and honour to announce the World Floorball Championships for women in Switzerland 2003. The tournament is organized by the Swiss Floorball Association and hosted, and supported, by the capital Bern and Gümlingen and Wünnewil. This is the fourth edition of the WFC for women, and the IFF is very pleased that the standards and number of participating countries are rising every time.
The SUHV has as an organizer been very successful, and amongst other events hosted the 1999 European Cup Finals for men and women. It was also in Switzerland that the first, and only, Open European Championships was organized in 1995 with, for the first time, participants outside Europe. Japan took part.
The IFF is very pleased with the SUHV as a good organizer, and with top officials and good management. We all know that in 2004 we will also come to Switzerland for the WFC for men, and for those taking part, in January 2005 for the European Cup finals. With this the SUHV has a golden opportunity to promote floorball in Switzerland.
On the international level we greet welcome the latest and 31st member association of IFF, the French National Floorball and Unihockey Association. I am confident that with France as an official member the cooperation between SUHV and ANFFU in general and the region in particular will flourish and be prosperous.
In order to meet with the International Vision, amongst others IOC recognition in 2006 according to the IOC charter, the IFF has taken the following steps.
The IFF has decided to strengthen the work for anti- doping and consequently decided in April 2003 to inform the WADA that floorball also takes its responsibility and adopts the World Anti- doping Code discussed at the last anti- doping conference in Copenhagen in Denmark.
The IFF has handed in an application to GAISF for ordinary membership. We all together at this stage fully comply with all regulations and requirements of GAISF.
In order to be able to fully take part in the World Games organized by the IWGA, the IFF has informed the IWGA that we intend to apply for membership as soon as we are accepted as an ordinary member of GAISF. For the next edition of the World Games, arranged in Germany, in Duisburg, in July 2005, we have already at this stage applied for observer status. The application for observer status was handed in, in order not to loose speed for the important market as Germany is!
I am glad to inform you that in mid April, the IFF meet with the IOC in Lausanne in Switzerland. The advice given by the honourable Mr Gilbert Felli was amongst other things to show quality in growth, work on the marketing of the sport and gain recognition from as many National Olympic Councils as possible. Once we have achieved this we will, naturally and consequently, gain IOC recognition. In this aspect we can draw many conclusions, one is to make sure that all member associations of IFF are active ones, which today is the case. We need also to focus on TV- and marketing of the sport. The IFF must, in good cooperation, work together with the organizers of IFF events and the media to be able to provide TV- coverage at every IFF event. We shall also carry on and implement the sport in schools and make sure that floorball attracts the youth.
Looking forward to seeing you all and a thrilling tournament. The IFF conveys many thanks to the Schweizerischer Unihockey Verband in cooperation with the capital Bern and Gümlingen and Wünnewil for hosting the WFC 2003 for women.