This year’s games will gather over nine hundred competitors from thirty-one countries and 150 from Croatia, competing in sixteen sports.
The 4th Croatian World Games, an amateur athletic competition among Croatians and their descendants from around the world, will be held in Zagreb from the 18th to 22nd of July. The event is organised by the State Office for Croats Abroad and the Croatian World Congress under the high patronage of Croatian President Kolinda Grabar Kitarović.
With its now traditional motto of One Heart – One Croatia, this year’s games will gather the largest pool of participants to date – over nine hundred competitors from around the world and 150 from Croatia.
ZvonkoMilas, the state secretary at the State Office for Croats Abroad, for the first time the event organiser, did not conceal his satisfaction with the interest garnered among young ethnic Croatians from around the world.
“The Croatian World Games are a truly special event that, in the best possible way, through sports, culture and socialising, brings us together and connects us. It brings together at one venue people from the Croatian homeland, the Croatians of Bosnia-Herzegovina, the indigenous Croatian minority communities abroad and the Croatian emigrant communities. It is impressive to see the amount of love – regardless of the distance and time that separates us – that Croatians scattered on five continents and their descendants invest in preserving and nurturing their Croatian identity. This is a sign of a deep devotion to the ancestral homeland, proof that these people see Croatia as ‘theirs’ – something all of us can truly be and are proud of,” Milas said.
VinkoSabljo president of co-organiser the Croatian World Congress, noted that, “these are the fourth games and, as a games coordinator, on behalf of the Croatian World Congress, I am proud to say that these games have broken all our records, both in terms of the number of participant and the number of countries they hail from. This is more than an athletic competition, it is also a place in which these people can get to known one another, learn more about their native country and discover why we call it Our Beautiful Homeland.”
Competitors from Croatia, Angola, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bolivia, Brazil, Montenegro, Chile, Denmark, Ecuador, France, Italy, Ireland, Canada, Macedonia, the Netherlands, Germany, Paraguay, Peru, Romania, the USA, Slovakia, Slovenia, Serbia, Switzerland, Sweden, Tanzania, Great Britain and Venezuela and will compete in sixteen sports.
The 4th Croatian World Games are also special in the great turn out of volunteers among students and youth associations in Croatia who will, as hosts, work to make the stay of their compatriots from thirty-one countries in the homeland unforgettable.
That the games have been recognised as a project of national interest is borne out by the fact that they have received the full support of the City of Zagreb, the Ministry of Defence, the Ministry of Science and Education, the Ministry of Tourism, the Ministry of Health, the Croatian National Tourist Board, the Tourist Board of the City of Zagreb, the Croatian Olympic Committee and others.