Hidilyn Diaz will donate P1 million worth of weightlifting equipment to the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) and the Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas (SWP) for the grassroots development of the sport.
Diaz, who made history as the first Filipino Olympic gold medalist, told Rappler on Wednesday, August 25, that she is partnering with Stronghold Athletics, where she will source the equipment.
“Para sa introduction ng sports, para sa gusto magstart ng weightlifting, kailangan magstart on something,” said the 30-year-old from Zamboanga.
“Hoping maibibigay ito sa mga wala pang [exposure sa] sport ng weightlifting sa LGU nila.“
(This is for the introduction of the sport, for those who want to start weightlifting, because they have to start with something. I hope this will be given to those who don’t have exposure yet to the sport of weightlifting in the LGUs.)
According to Diaz, she hopes that weightlifting will soon be a part of major grassroots events in the country like the Palarong Pambansa, which is organized by the Department of Education and PSC.
Weightlifting is only played in the Philippine National Games (PNG).
“It’s been my dream na para maipasok sa Palarong Pambansa [ang weightlifting] and for me, it’s my way to contribute to the community, hoping na may marami na magstart ng weightlifting with these equipment,” added Diaz.
(It’s been my dream for weightlifting to be included in the Palarong Pambansa and for me, it’s my way to contribute to the community, hoping people will start with weightlifting with these equipment.)
“Hidilyn wants the next breed of Filipino weightlifters to enjoy the fruit of her hard work,” said SWP president Monico Puentevella. “It’s a good gesture for someone who already brought great honor to the country.”
“She wants to help develop more lifters so we will have plenty to follow in her footsteps,” added Puentevella.
Diaz, in fact, had already put up a gym in her hometown. It has produced the likes of sisters Rose Jean and Rosegie Ramos, gold and silver medalists in the 2020 Online World Youth Cup hosted by Peru.
Aside from providing equipment from her Tokyo Olympic gold medal purse, Diaz plans on supporting coaching education for local mentors and help out with the grassroots weightlifting programs.
“Sana mabibigyan din ng learnings and coaching education sa mga coaches para magcoach sa mga bata. Kasi kung gusto nating palawigin ang sports, we need to send out equipment, we need to educate the coaches, we need to have continuous programs,” said Diaz.
(I hope that coaches will also be given coaching education in order to mentor the kids. If we want to improve sports, we have to send out equipment, we need to educate the coaches, we need to have continuous programs.) – with a report from Roy Luarca/Rappler.com