“I want to be part of the organising committee of the Olympic Games in 2028!” Anet Lablans, May 2005
In 2005, after 10 years of working as a communication consultant, I was thinking about my future: do I still want to do this job if I retire? The answer was “no”. I still had a lot of interest in my profession, so that part was ok. It was the business that I was not completely satisfied with.
Then I remembered the ‘good old days’ when I was playing football. Back then I wanted to organise a sports event, because many people enjoy it: the participants, the supporters, the volunteers, the referees and linesmen, the people in catering, and so on. It is a full package of entertainment for a lot of people!
As time passed and through experience, it became obvious to me that ‘sport’ means even more than just this and so organising sports events and everything that surrounds it, is the career I want to do; to pursue until I retire!To me the ultimate world sports event is the Olympic Games. So my ambition and personal goal is to be part of the organising committee of the Olympic Games in 2028 (rather sooner than later)!
To ensure I realise my ambition I have been active in the sporting world. A couple of steps on my Olympic road in time order are:
- Organising several sports events during the years I was working for the councillor Sports in the municipality of Haarlemmermeer, for example the Olympia’s Tour (national cycling tour), an international baseball tournament for the Pioniers, the Haarlemmermeer Run (running), and the Youth Friendship Games (all kinds of sports for children of all nationalities under 18 years).
- Networking with sportsmen and women and organisations in the sporting world (still do).
- Volunteer Right to Play (2005-2010).
- Volunteer Johan Cruyff Foundation (2006 and still doing).
- In 2007 I was asked to be the press officer for an international soccer tournament in Pensacola – Florida. 95 international teams, boys and girls, played football during one week with a lot of media attention – television, radio and newspapers.
- Writing articles in Dutch one being entitled “The passion of famous Dutch sportsmen and women”. Some people I interviewed are Wim Jonk (football player and trainer AJAX), Henk Gemser (ice skating coach) and Simon Kolkman (former Olympic rower).
- Since 2010 I am a commissioner of the Personnel Association with the focus on sports.
- Visiting several Olympic Cities during holidays like Barcelona and Atlanta. In 2012 I was one of the million spectators during the Olympic Games in London!
- In 2012 attending really engaging lectures at the University of Amsterdam with the theme ‘Olympic Games in the Netherlands: dream or nightmare?’
- The follow up seminars to these lectures, called ‘The Power of Sports’ (2013), are also very inspiring!
- In 2013, I designed my first website and you are looking at it right now!
- 14-19 July 2013: European Youth Olympic Festival (EYOF) in Utrecht. ‘Team Assistant’ of the NOC (National Olympic Committees) Denmark, Norway (in the beginning) and Poland. That is my contribution to the EYOF as one of the more than 2.000 Festival Makers (volunteers).
- Advice ‘Topsport met zonder Handicap’ of former Ducth Paralympic athlete Marije Smits about the future of this foundation (August – October 2013).
- Organizing the first World Championship Cruyff Courts in Amsterdam (June 2014 – for more information, please take a look at my weblog on this website).
- Master module Sport and Facility / Event Management at the Johan Cruyff Institute: passed! (September 2013 – June 2014).
- Graduated! International Master in Sports Management at the Johan Cruyff Institute in Amsterdam (September 2014 – June 2015). The subject of the Master Business Plan was about volunteers: ‘Qualified volunteers for every (sports) event’ with the inspiring title “Our VIP’s make YOU feel like a VIP!”
- Manager Marketing & Communications for One million goals. This charity project wants to let 1 million children score a goal, worldwide, and create a memory for life.
- Member Administrative Commission ‘Volunteers’ at Le Champion (September 2015 till September 2021). This organisation is specialised in sport events for cycling, running and walking. 80 events per year. The most well known events are the TCS Marathon of Amsterdam and the Dam tot Dam loop.
- I was interviewed for the magazine ‘Le Champion’ about Volunteers (January 2016).
- Another volunteer job, this time during the European Athletics Championships 2016 in the Netherlands. I was a team member of the Technical Information Center / Sports Information Desk. You can read my personal experiences in the above mentioned weblog (it is in Dutch). On the last day I had the opportunity to make a picture with the idol of this event, Dafne Schippers (proud!).
- Volunteering during WEURO 2017, UEFA (football)Women’s EURO in the Netherlands. I am based in the stadium of the city Utrecht, called De Galgenwaard and I am part of the team ‘Volunteer Management’.
- Cofounder, Board Member and Chairman a.i. CEF-V (Coöperatie Eredivise Futsal – Vrouwen) from May 2018 till December 2020. It is a cooperative for women’s indoor football.
- Board member (September 2018 till September 2021) of the sport events organisation Le Champion. My main focus is on the subjects Volunteers, Events and Marketing & Communications.