On Tuesday, I had the pleasure of having Mr. Jarred Forbes (Director of Sports) as my guest on Financially Speaking show. During the show, he revealed how his department was able to invite coaches to the Turks and Caicos Islands and a result Ms. Bryana Brown secured a 60% scholarship from Tennessee Tech. Well Done.
I also want to thank the Government for the initiative that was implemented recently by offering scholarships specifically for athletes.
Finally, I want to thank all of the 15 established sporting federations that are making a difference in the lives of our young people.
This article is for us to seriously review the funding for sports in the TCI. It is struggle for these organization getting funding from the private sector and so this is one area that our Government can assist by increasing the budget for the sports department.
Current Sports Budget
The current budget allocated to the Sports Department is 987,076 which represents .004 of the overall total expenditure budget for TCIG. Of this amount $503,926 is allocated to payroll. The remaining $483,150 is for the operations covering transport, electricity, maintenance, rental, grants and contribution, inter school sports and water. The two largest components are maintenance and contributions with $80,000 each followed by electricity of $70,992.
Recommended Sports Budget
At minimum, the sports recurrent expenditure budget should be tripled resulting in about $3M. One international game alone can cost $40,000 depending on the number of players. A local basketball tournament can cost around $30k and we will need at least four of these for the year. A track and field tournament can cost as much as 60k.
Some countries are members of International Olympics and as a result benefit significantly from contributions. Because TCI is not a member, it is incumbent upon us to invest more.
We will need to recruit more coaches and additional staff.
Apparently, there is a lot of volunteers but the commitment to sports may improve if there is compensation to individuals. The thing is a lot of people are already full time employees elsewhere and some have businesses and don’t have the time to commit as they would like so we will have to pay individuals for assistance.
Why Invest More in Sports?
Mr. Forbes believes that persons that are involve in sports will be excellent employees as they will be team players, hard workers, resilient workers and great leadership skills
I believe there is too much idle time among our young people and as a result they are finding others things to get involve. If we have consistent sports programs, this can keep our young people occupy and hopefully take them off the streets thus reducing crimes among our young people.
Sports unite people no matter who you are. If there is one thing we need in our society right now is for us to unite.
Sports can result in healthier lives.
It enhances and promotes patrotism
I know the budget process is a rigorous process and if we certainly increase the sports budget, we may have to reduce something else. However, if we focus on increasing our revenue items, we can have flexibility in increasing other expenditure items such as sports.
As Mr. Forbes stated, we must have consistent and regular events but these events require money. Of course the money must be managed properly, good controls in place and our programs should be structured and organized well.
We talk a lot about helping our youths, uniting people and trying to alleviate crime. Here is one way to do so, invest more in sports.