An organisation called The Gambia National Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association was formed in 1972 out of the need for Gambia to participate in the Olympic and Commonwealth Games. The organisation was under the Directorate of Youth and Sports and Mr Omar Sey then Director of Youth and Sport was appointed President. In 1976 the Association was registered as a full member of the International Committee.
In 1989 following a National debate and restructuring of all Sports in the country, a General Assembly of all National Sports Association was convened by the Commission of Enquiry which was set up by Government. A decision was made to change the name of the Association to The Gambia National Olympic and Sports Committee.
Alhaji A .B. Dandeh-Njie was elected President of the new Association and Alhaji A.M Touray Secretary General. The administration of the new association was moved from the Department of Youth and Sport to a small office at the Independence Stadium and managed by one person who was the typist and messenger.
In 1991 an Executive Secretary was appointed to set up a proper organisation for the association and establish programmes that would generate funds for Sports development and ensured proper coordination and promotion of sports in the country.
A new Constitution was developed and annual general assemblies were held to present activity and financial reports to member associations. Quadrennial general assemblies ensured that members were elected to the executive bureau of the associations.
In 1998 following the establishment of the National Sports Council the name of the Gambia National Olympic and Sports Committee was changed to Gambia National Olympic Committee and its role changed to assisting in the development of sports and coordinating the Olympic and Commonwealth Games.
As a member of the International Olympic Committee, the Programmes of Olympic Solidarity in the areas of training, provision of courses for coaches, athletes and administrative, regional and world seminars and conferences, mass sports, women and sports, sports and the environment, olympic academies etc are made available not only to the member Associations but to the whole sporting Fraternity in the country.
There are presently 21 sports associations affiliated to the GNOC.
In 1996 the GNOC conceived the Sports Infrastructure Initiative Project (SIIP) to help Government in the decetralisation of Sports. The SllP aimed to provide a mini Stadium in each of the 6 administrative division of the country and establish a resource centre where sports men and women with potential can be trained.
In 2001 Farafenni Olympic centre and Serekunda East were completed and the resource centre was opened on 1st March 2007.