Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, June 9, 2016 – FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F°, Secretary General Fernando Lima and Olympic champion Tande visited the Escola Municipal Dr. Cícero Penna on Tuesday, the school which will be the site of Volleyball House during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in August.
The visiting party were welcomed by the 5- to 11-year-old students who learned about the school's role as a hub for all volleyball and beach volleyball activities during the Olympics. The Cicero Penna school is located near Copacabana Beach, the venue for the Olympic beach volleyball tournament.
President Graça encouraged the children to play as much volleyball as possible. "Volleyball is a key sport for all of you. In volleyball there is no violence, it is not a contact sport, the boys can play with the girls, you can be friends all the time," he said.Olympic champion Tande poses with the students at the Escola Municipal Cicero Penna
Olympic champion Tande told the children about the role volleyball has played in his life. "Volleyball gave me all I have, including an Olympic medal," he said. "The sport teaches you that you have to have discipline, dedication and train a lot, every day, each day."
The children watched a video presenting volleyball before asking questions about the sport and this summer’s Olympics. They were excited to see a replica of the medal Tande won at the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Games when Brazil’s men’s volleyball team won gold. Tande remembered that Mr Lima had been the first journalist to interview him after the victory and presented him with the medal as a souvenir of that event.Tande and FIVB Secretary General Fernando Lima talk about a memorable victory for Brazil in 1992
The Escola Municipal Cicero Penna will be fully refurbished to host the Volleyball House this summer, with the school to benefit from the renovation work after the Olympics. An official Volleyball House opening ceremony will take place in the immediate run-up to the Rio 2016 Games, which begin on August 5.
Quotes from the video:
FIVB President Graça: "The FIVB has a volleyball at school programme. There is a concern for kids in the volleyball family and we believe that volleyball is the solution for our youth."
School Director Ana Maria Prazeres da Guia: "The FIVB had this proposal since the beginning. To leave a structural legacy for the school. The plumbing was changed. The whole electrical system was also changed. The renovation was made with attention not to interfere with the classes. The FIVB will use the school but it will be a real legacy for us."
Tande: "This is the school chosen to be the Volleyball House. Volleyball is the number one sport in Brazil at the Olympic Games. And you will be able to have volleyball here at your school. The changes will improve the school, volleyball balls will be donated to the school. All for you, so you can achieve, dream and be able to transform your lives."
Student: Everything was renovated, the FIVB has painted the school. The FIVB added air conditioning. So that is what has improved for me, as when it is too hot having the air conditioning makes everything better.