Over 2000 delegates from around the world attended the International Conference of Sports for Women on 6th and 7th November 2017 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Center (ADNEC). This, the fourth biennial ICSW, was the largest so far, in terms of delegate numbers, the quantity of live sessions, and the diversity of speakers and panelists who took part.
ICSW is an initiative of the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy (FBMA) and aims to advance the global conversation on women’s sports by providing thought-leadership from some of the most experienced industry figures and sporting icons globally.
CSM was appointed by FBMA to deliver all aspects of the event from proposition development, marketing and operational delivery, to commercial and media support. As the biggest event in the calendar for women’s sport in the UAE, the CSM Middle East team produced a schedule packed with diverse opinion, widespread expertise and experience, and an unparalleled line-up of sporting icons and industry leaders.
Day one was kicked-off by H.E. Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Cabinet Member and Minister of State for Tolerance, who welcomed the assembled delegates from around the world to the UAE capital, and explained the crucial role that sports is playing across the nation in addressing key societal challenges. His Excellency was one of three UAE Ministers of State to address the assembled delegates over the two days, alongside the UAE Minister for Youth, H.E. Shamma Al Mazrui and H.E. Noura Bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, UAE Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development.
The theme for the conference was ‘Inspiring Generations’, bringing together some of the world’s leading sportswomen to share their stories and experiences with the world. As a milestone event in the world of women’s sport, the ICSW and FBMA have positioned Abu Dhabi as a leader in the development of opportunities for women in sport and this was reflected in the caliber of the speakers. Among the panelists to grace the stages were Zahra Lari, a three-time UAE national figure skating champion, Raha Moharrak, the youngest Arab and first Saudi to successfully climb Mount Everest, Samar Nassar, CEO of the Local Organizing Committee of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World cup 2016 and the ‘Iron Nun’ - 86 year-old Ironman triathlete Sister Madonna Buder.
Dr. Omniyat Al Hajri, Board Member of the FBMA and Director of the Public Health Division at the Department of Health, Abu Dhabi said, “It has been an extraordinary two days filled with inspirational stories, emotional speeches, and insightful workshops. We’ve been blessed with the most incredible line-up of sporting icons, and have reached our delegate capacity over the two days which is wonderful. I have no doubt that anyone coming to ICSW this year will have left with new energy and inspired for the future.”