International Paralympic Committee (IPC)
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International Paralympic Committee (IPC)

Pacific Island Para-athletes receive boost from Australian Government

Paralympic athletes in the Islands of the Oceania region will be giving a significant boost towards the preparations for the Tokyo Games, thanks to a new initiative by the Australian Government and the Australian Olympic Committee.

Due to the impact of COVID-19, many Pacific athletes face significant challenges in completing final training programs and competing at critical qualifying events. But with the support from the Australian Government’s PacificAus Sports program, Oceania athletes will be able to have the greatest opportunity to realise their Paralympic creams.

More than 170 Olympic and Paralympic athletes from eleven Pacific nations will benefit from the grant, including the athletes that fly under the banner of the Oceania Paralympic Committee (OPC) with athletes benefiting from a number of initiatives.

The OPC will hold two national camps at a value of AU$10,000 each, in Fiji, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea, all to take place in June and July.

Funding will support a Pre-Games Training Camp in Fiji, prior to departure to Tokyo, worth $15,000 for NPC’s who will travel together to Tokyo via Fiji Airways.

And finally, funding will also support Fijian athlete Inosi Bulimairewa, who is based in Australia, to put the finishing touches on his preparations. This will include funding for training fees, transport, gym fees and COVID Vaccinations.

Oceania Paralympic Committee President Paul Bird thanked the Australian Government and the AOC for its support of Paralympians from across the region on their journey to Tokyo.

“The Paralympic Games is the pinnacle of sport for people with disabilities, but for so many people across the Oceania region, the Paralympic Games is so much more,” Bird said.

“The Games are symbolic of a life many from the region would never dream possible, particularly with obstacles faced day-to-day such as disability and medical care, transport, the cost of training.

“The funding received today by the Australian Government and the Australian Olympic Committee is vital to assist our Pacific Island Paralympians to reach their goals and achieve their best in Tokyo.

“Like all athletes, they have been impacted by the pandemic and this support will ensure they are able to train and prepare for the Games.”

Posted: 10/6/2021

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