TTOC president, Brian Lewis, centre, NLCB board member Brian Sawh, left, and Instant Money Game supervisor Candi West view the 'Going for Gold' Scratch cards which will be available for purchase at NLCB outlets on Monday. Author: JONATHAN RAMNANANSINGH « ThumbsIn search of an increase in financial assistance towards the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee’s Athlete and Welfare Preparation Fund, president of the local Olympic fraternity, Brian Lewis, unveiled a landmark joint venture with the National Lotteries Control Board (NLCB) to aid the growth of this initiative.

At Olympic House on Abercromby Street, Port-of-Spain, yesterday, Lewis, NLCB chairman of marketing Brian Sawh and Instant Money Game supervisor, Candi West, disclosed their historic project which aims at generating approximately $1million per year towards the Athlete Fund and boosting the TTOC’s aim of achieving ten gold medals or more by 2024.

Together, the trio launched ‘Going for Gold’, a brand new NLCB sanctioned scratch game which will raise funds for Trinidad and Tobago’s potential Olympians. On Monday, 500,000 scratch tickets carrying the logo #10Golds24 will be on sale to the public for $10 at approximately 800 NLCB registered outlets nationwide. With a grand prize of $100,000, buyers of these tickets will be directly investing into the Athlete Preparation Fund. There are multiple other prizes customers can win in this scratch game and organisers have stated that chances are estimated at one-in-four. The first tranche of tickets is expected to run over a three-month period and will be renewed upon completion. This is a bold step in realising Lewis’ dream, having launched the #10Golds24 in December last year and then taking part in the Trinidad and Tobago International Marathon in January 2015.

On this historic drive, Lewis explained, “The importance of continuing and trying different initiatives is very important given the determination to create the environment that will allow our athletes to achieve their goals and objectives. We want to cultivate a system of excellence which clarifies the development pathway.”

The NLCB and TTOC anticipate that the ‘Going for Gold’ game, which was designed by GTECH, will be instrumental in raising public awareness and stimulating further national support of the athletes’ cause.

Camille Forde, director of the NLCB, was enthusiastic about the game’s potential to augment the impact of #10Golds24. “It is our hope that the interactive element of “Going for Gold” will stimulate renewed interest and care for Trinidad and Tobago’s athletes,” she said. “The NLCB is passionate about supporting the achievement of our talented young people, and “Going for Gold” can play a significant role in helping our game-buyers feel invested in our Olympic dream.”

“With this idea, we are getting the public more directly involved in paving the future of our Olympians,” added Lewis. “We have had the Fund open since last year and have not attained what we have projected for thus far. This is why we must adopt and implement new ideas with a positive mind-set.”