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Interview with Gennady Tyshler

Vice President and representative of the International Charity Fund “For Future of Fencing” in African countries Gennady Tyshler speak to our correspondent about the International Fund Branch Office activities and the specific character of the fencing development on this continent.

Gennady, you’ve lived in the Republic of South Africa for a long time, taking part in fencing development in this country. What duties do you perform as Vice President of the Fund?

- In December, 2005 I was elected Vice President of the Fund responsible for the development of fencing in Africa. In May, 2007 we managed to register the Fund Brunch Office in the Republic of South Africa officially. Today International Fencing Federation (FIE) unites 122 federations from all over the world. Thought there are 60 countries in Africa, fencing federations exist only in 17 of them. Generally the development of sports on this continent meets many problems. First of all there are many poor countries where the main goal is to feed people and overcome several infectious diseases. There isn’t environment for sport development in these countries. Nevertheless, using the resources of International Charity Fund “For Future of Fencing” in 2006-2007 we managed to create background for opening five new federations in Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho and Swaziland. Botswana Fencing Federation has already been recognized by FIE, and Namibia Fencing Federation obtained support from the National Olympic Committee. These countries surround the Republic of South Africa, where the Fund Branch operates, that’s why the national federations’ representatives have the opportunity to undergo training in our training centre and coaching Academy.

As Vice President of the Fund I decided to concentrate on fencing development in English-speaking countries. Historically FIE gives support mainly to former colonies of France.Nevertheless French-speaking countries representatives also turn for help to our Fund. For example, last year only because of the Fund cash support, 16 thousands USD, Senegal national team managed to participate in World Championship.

What real support the Find provides for development of fencing in Africa?

International Charity Fund “For Future of Fencing” provides the countries that develop fencing or take their first steps in this direction with equipment, electrical installations and methodological literature. We collected kit of all the necessary documents that we send both to the existing federations and to the countries that provide conditions favoring development of fencing. This kit concludes all necessary documents for the federations work – sample of the Statute, Rules and Regulations of the federation. 10 DVD with the fragments of fencing bouts during the Olympic Games are also included into the kit. It’s necessary for beginners and coaches to see how world standard fencing looks like. Also we put into the kit educational disks for all kind of weapons, practice PC-programs, education and methodic books.

Can you point out the specific features of the development of fencing on the African continent?

It should be understood that Africa is the unique continent and it`s impossible to use usual conditions for creating fencing federations. If fencers from any European or Asian country decide to create the federation, they will meet together, accept the Statute, elect the President, the Secretary and began to work. Then they will pay entry fee to FIE and become the full members of the world fencing movement. In Africa it`s impossible. There are many poor countries in here, so we must go another way. At first we should create the federations’ administrations, that using money, given by FIE, the National Olympic Committees of their countries and the International Charity Fund “For Future of Fencing” would buy equipment and installations, invite qualified coaches, and conduct advertising champagne to bring attention to fencing. It’s the only way, which can lead to extensive development of fencing on this continent.

How do you feel, do African people want to go in for fencing?

We know the proverb: “Sport is a chance for a provincialist». People who have everything go in for sports for health, refreshing, they don`t aim to achieve sporting excellence. For majority of African people professional sport creates the opportunity to succeed in life, to achieve fame, to keep a family.

How do you think, what steps the Fund can take for speeding up development of fencing in Africa?

I think that up to date the Fund has done everything possible for exciting the curiosity of African countries to fencing development. Suffice to say, because of active promotion of fencing on the continent and the practical steps, taken by the Fund, fencing was included in the official programme of All Africa Games for the first time of the sports history in Africa. The Games will take place from 10 till 18 of July in Algeria. Without doubt this fact will influence the development of fencing, draw attention of the Olympic Committees of different countries to this sport.

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