The Netherlands aspires to be one of the top ten countries in the international sporting arena. Strong performances by elite athletes will enable us to attain this goal. The medals won by elite athletes also inspire others to take up sport. For these and other reasons, the government invests in elite sport.
Investing in elite sport
In order to compete at world-class level, elite athletes must be able to devote all their time and energy to their particular sport. They also need top-quality guidance and support, not only with regard to their sport, but also from their social and work environment and society at large. To facilitate this, central government invests in elite sport in partnership with NOC*NSF in the following ways:
Innovation in elite sportThe government is investing in innovation in elite sport, notably in training programmes and competitions. It is also funding programmes to develop sporting talent and enhance the knowledge and skills of talent scouts and sports coaches.
Personal allowances for elite athletesElite athletes who earn below the gross minimum wage may be eligible for a personal allowance to enable them to devote as much time as possible to their sporting careers.
Training and education facilities for elite athletesThe Netherlands has a number of training and education facilities (CTOs) for elite athletes, where they can live, study and train full-time for high-level competitions. They also have access to top-class sports medicine facilities.
Secondary schools for talented young athletesSome secondary schools support young athletes so that they can combine learning and participation in high-level sport. The school coordinates their classroom timetable with their training schedules, to encourage them to build a career in society alongside their careers as elite athletes.
Job training and employment for elite athletesA new collaborative programme backed by the business community is helping to guide elite athletes towards suitable employment, during or after their sports career. However, businesses should not be alone in promoting a sport-friendly working environment, so the government has launched its own scheme to provide elite athletes with training placements or temporary jobs in the civil service.
Premier sporting eventsThe government has plans to stage a number of international elite sporting events in the Netherlands.