El Salvador is only 100 days away from the inauguration of the XXIV Central American and Caribbean Games San Salvador 2023, a competition that will be held from June 23rd to July 18th, and that is a strong bid for sports by Nayib Bukele’s government.
El Salvador accepted the challenge to organize the San Salvador 2023 Games in record time, which will open the gates of the Olympic Cycle of the region towards Paris 2024.
According to the sports program of the San Salvador 2023 Games, there will be a total of 38 sports, with 32 of them and 45 disciplines hosted in the Salvadoran capital; while the secondary venue in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, will host six sports and nine disciplines.
The organization of the games is a joint effort of several institutions that form the Sports Cabinet and different State Departments along with the Organizing Committee (COSSAN2023), the El Salvador National Institute of Sports (INDES), El Salvador Olympic Committee (COES), and the San Salvador City Hall, among others.
In a timely manner
The president of the Organizing Committee of the Central American and Caribbean Games San Salvador 2023 (COSSAN2023), Yamil Bukele, recently highlighted the importance of the event, and detailed that it will have a total of 465 events, in which a total of 1,499 medals will be distributed: 465 gold, 465 silver, and 569 bronze.
Bukele emphasized that the work in the sports venues are being done “in a timely manner”, which is why the improvement of the sports infrastructure will be one of the biggest legacies of the San Salvador 2023 Games.
Some stages being worked on are: Estadio Nacional Jorge “Mágico” González, Gimnasio Nacional José Adolfo Pineda, Complejo Deportivo El Polvorín, Parque de Pelota Saturnino Bengoa, Complejo Deportivo Ciudad Merliot, Estadio de Sóftbol Pablo Arnoldo Guzmán, Complejo Ecuestres San Andrés, el Palacio de los Deportes Carlos “El Famoso” Hernández y Estadio Nacional Las Delicias.
“With these games, we are reasserting the commitment with the Salvadoran athletic family. Thanks to the support of our strategic partners of the Central American Bank for Economic Integration, which provided us with financing of up to US$115.2 million, nine venues are being initially intervened to become competition venues”, the official explained a few weeks ago.
Dinora Acevedo, general director of COSSAN2023, mentioned that El Salvador’s delegation will be made up of around 550 athletes and 275 officials.
In other matters, Bukele highlighted that in San Salvador, the 38 sports and their respective disciplines will have first class television production and projection on various platforms.
“In swimming, for example, the production in general will be near the level of the Olympic Games. We will have drones, underwater cameras, and we want to share the experience and details through the small screen, not only of our contingent but of all the sports of the different disciplines and countries. We want this experience to be at the highest level”, reiterated the president of COSSAN2023. “We want this experience to be of the highest level”, the president of COSSAN2023 remarked.
On the other hand, to guarantee the preparation of the Salvadoran contingent for the event, INDES distributed at the end of last year, among 33 sports federations, an initial amount of 1 million and 5 thousand dollars.
“Of the 33 federations, we have received proposals from 22 of them for the use of allocated funds. Different preparation projects are being financed, including training camps such as the one the artistic swimming girls had in Mexico, preparatory competitions such as the one held by Enrique Arathoon (sailing). We are also supporting some federations with international coaches that have decided to strengthen this area, as in the case of bowling, as well as sports equipment”, commented Acevedo.
The general director of COSSAN2023 also explained that only the Salvadoran Football Federation (Fesfut), which currently operates under a Regularization Committee, did not accept funds for the preparation of the teams that will represent the country in the regional event.
The athletes, delegates, and coaches will be lodged in the facilities of Universidad de El Salvador (UES), which will be the Villa Centroamericana y del Caribe.
“What’s more, we are investing more than $30 million dollars in the infrastructure of the central campus of Universidad de El Salvador, which will serve as the Sports Villa for this event. The legacy, as you can see, is not only sporting, but also for the educational community of the alma mater,” Bukele emphasized.
El Salvador will host the Central American and Caribbean Games for the third time in history. The first time was in 1935, and the second one in 2002.
“This is a magical moment, since you are not only representing the people of El Salvador. You shall represent all of us. From tonight, you become the capital of sports,” said Luis Mejia, president of Centro Caribe Sports, during the brand launching of the games.
El Salvador will not participate in netball, which will be held in San Salvador, in addition to racquetball, canoeing and modern pentathlon, which will be held in the Santo Domingo sub-venue.