(Oranjestad)—Yesterday evening, the grand official opening of the Scholar Games 2023 took place, a project presented by Cabinet Wever-Croes II under the leadership of the Minister of Sports and Education, Endy Croes, in colaboration with IBISA. After several years without the Scholar Games taking place, this year the students from different schools in Aruba are competing in various sports for different prizes, both for the students and the schools.
The opening began with the official parade. The Ora Ubao Scout Group accompanied the entry of the Aruba flag, followed by different multicultural groups presenting traditional works from their countries, under the guidance of John Freddy Montoya.
Next up was the entrance of the protagonists of the Scholar Games—the athletes of the participating schools in the SG Aruba 2023. A total of 45 schools and over 1000 children are competing in different sports disciplines.
After the official parade, a dance performance by the NLG and NTG dance groups, guided by Marisol Peña, took place, along with athletes from Gihae Gymnastics, who gave a beautiful presentation to kick off the great school event.
Prime Minister of Aruba, Evelyn Wever-Croes, during the formal part, delivered a speech in which she emphasized the great honor and pleasure of being able to attend the grand opening of WE Aruba 2023, which has become a reality again after several years.
“Today, together with the team, all the teachers and all the schools, we are fulfilling our obligations to our children. On behalf of the Government of Aruba, I want to thank each and every one of you who made this possible,” she stated.
The Prime Minister emphasized that every time she gives a speech, she mentions that Aruba is in recovery because the economy is doing well, tourism is doing well, finances are improving, and unemployment is decreasing. However, she stressed that the progress of a country is measured when its children progress and more through sports.
She highlighted that the Government of Aruba can only do part of the work but is grateful to all the seniors, youth, teachers, government officials, parliamentarians, and leaders in various sports activities who make SG Aruba possible. “On behalf of the Government of Aruba, I want to thank all of you,” she said.
The minister of Sports and Education, Endy Croes, expressed that the goal of SG Aruba is to provide students and future athletes in preschool, primary, and secondary education with a modern and innovative platform to compete in seven different disciplines, as well as cultural dances.
A total of approximately 4,500 students from around 60 schools competed for over six months, and now the ones who qualified are around 1,000 children from 45 schools who will be competing for the top prizes in the next two weeks.
“A word of congratulations and thanks to all the schools, teachers, principals, and sports leaders who made this possible. It’s not the minister, it’s not the government, but it’s with the help of everyone participating that we have achieved this,” Minister Croes emphasized.
He emphasized the importance of sports as a vehicle that shapes a better individual for the community, both physically, mentally, and socially. He stressed that sports promote discipline, character, love for others, love for the country, respect, friendship, excellence, courage, and inspiration, which are fundamental values for the formation of a whole society. “Sports cross all borders to unite an entire nation,” he highlighted.
Finally, Prime Minister, President of the Parliament of Aruba, Edgar Vrolijk, and Minister Croes officially kicked off SG Aruba 2023 and inaugurated the first football match that took place last night.