On 22 September 2018, International Swimming Federation (FINA) and the Ministry of Sport of the Republic of Tatarstan signed the FINA Development Centre Collaboration Agreement. The Kazan Centre has joined other training facilities and centres under the FINA auspices, including the FINA Development Centre in Dakar (Senegal) and the FINA Training Centres – at the Thanyapura Health and Sports Resort in Phuket (Thailand) and in Florida (USA). These centres operate within the framework of various FINA Scholarship and Development Programmes. All of them are intended for athletes from different continents and regions of the world.
The main goal of the FINA Development Centre is to create the most favourable conditions for unlocking the potential of athletes representing countries with minor national achievements in swimming, as well as providing opportunities to improve their results in preparation for the World Championships and the Olympic Games. Upgrading the qualifications of coaches and officials from Russia and neighbouring countries and conducting educational programmes for coaches and officials are another priorities of the FINA Development Centre.
The FINA Development Programme consists of five (5) modules:
- FINA Scholarships – for athletes only. The FINA Scholarships Programme offers the opportunity to obtain financial and technical assistance partially covered by FINA for an athlete proposed by their National Federation. The Scholarship helps the athlete in their preparation and qualifying for the upcoming World Championships.
- FINA Clinics – for coaches and officials. It is an educational program available to representatives of National Federations who wish to join the FINA Clinics.
- FINA Schools – for officials only. The goal of the FINA Schools is to conduct training and certification of officials in 6 (six) aquatic disciplines. Officials attend the FINA School in the particular discipline and pass the certification exam in order to obtain FINA Technical Official status. Only FINA Technical Officials may be included in the list of FINA Technical Officials eligible to officiate at FINA Competitions.
- FINA Coaches Certification Programme. The programme is available to representatives of National Federations who wish to join the FINA Coaches Certification Programme. The course is designed to provide coaches with training that gives them an opportunity to continuously develop, educate and improve their level for the advancement of the sport. The FINA Coaches Certification Programme is part of the coaches’ certification course worldwide.
- FINA World Seminars. The FINA World Seminar aims to be a reference event for coaches, officials, or experts in the selected FINA discipline. The event is led by the FINA Technical Committee in charge of the discipline, who will define its programme, target group and main goals.
FINA scholarships programme
Currently, the main project within the framework of the Centre’s international programme has become the scholarships programme for two disciplines – Swimming and Diving. The launch of the Artistic Swimming programme is also planned.
Since the launch of the programme (from February 18, 2019 to the present), 10 swimmers from 10 countries (Georgia, DPRK, Kyrgyzstan, Cuba, Latvia, North Macedonia, Moldova, Pakistan, Turkmenistan, and Montenegro) have participated in the Swimming programme, two of them qualified for the FINA World Championships in Gwangju, Korea.
The Diving programme is open since May 2019. To date, 7 divers from 7 countries (Dominican Republic, Egypt, India, Iran, Lithuania, El Salvador, and Chile) take part in the programme. Three of them participated in the FINA World Championships in Korea in 2019.
Since September 2019, preparations for participation in the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 are underway. Two scholarship programme participants (Swimming and Diving) qualified for XXXII Olympic Summer Games in Tokyo (Japan).
Staying in Kazan allows the FINA Development Centre scholarship holders to take part in FINA competitions without additional travel costs and with the opportunity to compete “at home”.