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Sunday, July 21, 2024

US observe star Allyson Felix establishes first-ever nursery for Olympic dad and mom

Earlier than they’ve even begun, the 2024 Olympic Video games in Paris have already made historical past. After asserting that Paris 2024 would be the first-ever Video games to attain gender parity, the Worldwide Olympic Committee has additionally introduced an enlargement of providers for athletes that would change the sport.

This yr, in a partnership with longtime sponsor P&G, the Olympic Village will probably be dwelling to its first-ever nursery. 

In accordance with a press launch from the IOC, the nursery will “present a cushty and handy atmosphere for athlete dad and mom to spend time with their infants and younger youngsters throughout the Video games.”

A rendering of a nursery sponsored by Pampers.
Picture courtesy of P&G

The nursery features a designated area for childcare, in addition to entry to diapers, wipes, and different necessities. 

The advocacy of Allyson Felix — essentially the most embellished observe and subject athlete in historical past — was instrumental in bringing this lodging to life.

“I simply knew how tough it was to compete on the prime stage after I had my daughter,” Felix advised CBS Information.

Allyson Felix competes at the 2020 Olympic Games
Allyson Felix on the 2020 Olympic Video games. Picture courtesy of IOC

She added that when she joined the Athlete’s Fee on the IOC, she “actually needed to be that voice for athlete mothers and simply take away one much less factor for them to fret about within the stress of competitors.”

Felix’s colleagues on the IOC share her sentiments.

“Many athletes are balancing their sporting careers and household. I understand how this feels as I competed on the 2014 Olympic Winter Video games as a mom with a younger baby,” mentioned IOC Athletes’ Fee Chair Emma Terho. “Being pregnant and motherhood don’t should imply a profession finish for feminine athletes.”

Felix additionally added that she sees the nursery as “a shift within the tradition” for girls athletes.

“I feel it actually tells ladies that you may select motherhood and in addition be on the prime of your recreation,” she advised CBS Information. 

A rendering of a nursery sponsored by Pampers at the 2024 Paris Olympics
Picture courtesy of P&G

The nursery will probably be situated contained in the Athlete Village Plaza, the place the entire athletes stay throughout the Video games. Open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day, athletes and caregivers can enter the nursery utilizing a requested cross from their consultant Nationwide Olympic Committee. 

These guidelines will enable there to be sufficient area for infants and toddlers all through the day.

Moreover, the IOC shared that P&G can even help different providers within the Olympic Village, together with a salon, laundry rooms, and a dental clinic. Complimentary menstrual merchandise can even be obtainable in restrooms all through the Village.

The Olympic Village in Paris, France
Picture courtesy of IOC

“I feel we’re transferring in the precise route,” Felix advised CBS, of inclusivity for girls in athletics. “We’ve actually pushed to be in a greater place. We’re seeing so many athlete mother position fashions for the youthful ones to look to, and I hope we proceed to search out methods to raised help these ladies.”

Outdoors of sports activities, the retired U.S. sprinter has lengthy been an advocate for fogeys — particularly mothers. Most lately, she obtained a $20 million grant from the Melinda French Gates Basis to place towards Black maternal well being.

“I’m trying ahead to deploying this cash to organizations which can be doing pressing work on this area and can actually get it to members of the group which can be most vulnerable to issues, and even demise, throughout being pregnant,” Felix advised CBS Information. “I’m so humbled to obtain it and I’m excited to place the cash to good work.”

Allyson Felix walks with her toddler daughter on a red track
Felix and her first-born daughter. Picture courtesy of Allyson Felix/Instagram

Felix can be well-known for her contract disputes with Nike, which based on a 2019 New York Instances op-ed from the athlete, supplied her a 70% pay lower and refused protections throughout Felix’s being pregnant. 

“If I am unable to safe maternity protections, who can?” Felix wrote. “What I’m not keen to just accept is the enduring established order round maternity.”

Felix’s advocacy prompted Nike to announce a brand new maternity coverage for its sponsored athletes, guaranteeing compensation for the 18 months surrounding childbirth

Now retired and wanting to help the following technology of dad or mum athletes, Felix will probably be on the 2024 Video games in a complete new capability.

“That is the primary time in 20 years I received’t be competing, so there’s a little bit of loss and grief, but in addition some pleasure for this new chapter,” she advised CBS Information. “I’ll be bringing my complete household to absorb the Video games.”

Header pictures courtesy of Mohan (CC BY 2.0) and P&G

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