The Azerbaijan Weightlifting Federation hopes to strengthen the material and technical base of weightlifting in the country ©EWF/Azerbaijan Weightlifting Federation

The Azerbaijan Weightlifting Federation has created a platform to allow individuals to make voluntary donations to clubs in the country.

The "Tekan" platform aims to encourage private sector involvement in the development of weightlifting in Azerbaijan across all regions.

The stated short-term goal is to strengthen the material and technical base of the sport in the country.

In the medium term, it is hoped that donations can help to improve Azerbaijan's performance in international competitions, and in the long term the ambition is to make Azerbaijan one of the biggest countries in the world in weightlifting.

Individuals can choose between more than 20 weightlifting clubs to make their donation to.

Weightlifting is viewed as a way to promote a healthy lifestyle among young people and a contributor to the Olympic Movement.

Azerbaijan has never won an Olympic medal in weightlifting, and has not been represented in the sport at the Games since London 2012.

The country has previously been implicated in doping scandals in the sport with more than 20 violations since Beijing 2008.

It lost some of its qualification places for Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020.

Weightlifting remains off the programme for the Los Angeles 2028 Olympics, with a pathway laid down by the International Olympic Committee for it to restore its place.

The most important element required is changing the culture of a sport that has been dogged by doping and corruption scandals.

The International Weightlifting Federation elected a new President in Mohamed Jalood, secretary general in Antonio Urso and Executive Board in June last year.