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By  Jorge Manuel Zelaya Fajardo
May  15th , 2020

I am fascinated by the sport of tennis. The combination of precision, agility, focus on results, competitiveness and individual responsibility of the sport  has always captivated my attention. From a very young age I waited for the last days of June to see the greats: Borg, Sampras and now my all-time favorite Roger Federer. However this writing is not about tennis only.

 I am intrigued by prevention as a concept and behavior. I have always admired how there are people who have the vision, clarity of thought and discipline to be able to do everything possible to avoid something before it happens or at least to reduce its negative impact if the event were to occur. However this writing is not about prevention only.

With the arrival of the SARS-CoV-2 virus pandemic that causes Covid 19 disease, the world, in my personal opinion, was not prepared to be prepared. It is utopian to think that a country, organization, family or person can be prepared for EVERYTHING at ALL times; but the pandemic has quickly exposed a human being where we can see a body of muscles with strengths and weaknesses, successes and mistakes, attitudes and behaviors. On this exciting topic we could write, dialogue and discuss for hours. However, right in the midst of searching for knowledge to get out of my ignorance, I came across something completely different and  unusual  that surprised me greatly. Something I had not seen in the entire pandemic. Something that really made me reflect deeply. The organizing body of the Wimbledon tennis championship was extremely well prepared for the SARS-CoV-2 virus (coronavirus family) that causes Covid disease 19.

The Wimbledon tennis championship is organized by the All England Lawn Tennis Association, which since 1877 has been developing the event considered to be the oldest and most prestigious in the world. It is the third Grand Slam tournament (preceded by the Australian and French open) and followed by the United States open. It is an event that takes place on grass as a surface, for a  two weeks period  during which ( we) fans delight in seeing the best in the world play in the sport of tennis.
For all of the above, I am obliged to ask you a question: Did your country have pandemic insurance? Did your organization where you work have it? Did you and your family have it? WIMBLEDON DID.

 In 2003, the All England Lawn Tennis Association which organizes Wimbledon signed a pandemic 
 insurance policy whose annual payment was US $ 2 million. At the end of 17 years, the 
 accumulated payment reflected in his financial statements amounts up to US$ 34 million. 
Due to the current pandemic, the insurance policy will become effective very soon 
for a payout value of US $ 140 million, being able to cope , in a relatively easy fashion way,  
with the health and economic crisis that we are all going through today in the world.
Although Wimbledon will not receive the $ 310 million it had projected for all of its expected income (tickets, broadcasts, sponsorships, and more), there is no doubt that the  insurance policy will fully help cover normal operating expenses.
It's really amazing to hear something like this. It's not common, not at all.  Even in the strongest economies, most profitable companies, and hardest-working families, the concept of a pandemic insurance policy is not something to be expected. However, the lesson is found subliminally, conceptually, underlying in what happened.

We were not prepared to be prepared. The lesson is that the concept of insurance policy, reserve fuel tank, emergency fund or whatever you want to call it, must exist always and at all times. What is difficult is having the practical wisdom (one of the four values ​​of Stoic philosophy) of having the vision and discipline to carry out this action.
Corporate and personal finance experts advise having an emergency fund (on our balance sheet) for at least six months or more of our gross income. This means that if an emergency occurs, we would be insured for six months of our expenses or monthly costs. That is not easy for anyone. And the proof is in today's world news. A HIGH percentage of companies and families cannot have confinement for months, weeks and even some days without having income.

To wrap things up, the lesson is provided. If we didn't do it before it happened, we just didn't. PERIOD. However, if we learn the lesson well, we will tirelessly seek to have a mechanism (insurance, fund or reserve) to face future crises. Two important aspects that derive from this are: 1. Nothing guarantees that our mechanism will allow us to survive completely (but it will surely help to resist the blow) and 2. There are also other types of non-economic insurance that help a lot in crises such as faith in God, self-confidence and hope that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.



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