Deloitte Parasport calls for clubs to celebrate National Paralympic Day
The British Paralympic Association (BPA) and its grass-roots club signposting tool Deloitte Parasport today called on local disability sports clubs and organisations registered on the website to join the celebrations for the UK’s first ever National Paralympic Day, which will be held on Saturday September 7 2013.
Parasport is an online resource designed to help disabled people find high-quality sporting opportunities in their local area. To date, almost 3,000 clubs have registered their contact details and information on their training sessions onto the website. All the clubs on the database are being encouraged to do something special during their usual training session around September 7 to celebrate National Paralympic Day.
Today’s call to action follows the Mayor of London’s recent announcement of a day of celebration on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London with a Deaf and disabled arts and sport festival, set to feature elite Paralympic competition, family-friendly come-and-try opportunities for a number of Paralympic sports, and the Liberty Arts Festival. The aim is to ensure that National Paralympic Day can be enjoyed and celebrated across the UK.
Clubs could open up a practise session to their community so that they can showcase their sport and the talent of their athletes or those that are particularly keen to get new members may like to put on a ‘come-and-try’ session so that people can experience the sport for themselves.
Parasport is also working to ensure that clubs can promote volunteering and coaching opportunities through the volunteering network ‘Join In’, inspired by the fantastic efforts of last summer’s Games Makers. Registered clubs will be able to advertise the ways in which they need support by signing up on the Parasport website.
Tim Hollingsworth, Chief Executive of the BPA, appealed to registered clubs to get involved either on or around September 7 to celebrate the day. He said:
“We’re really excited to be offering people across the UK the opportunity to relive the wonder of London 2012 through National Paralympic Day. In this first year, we really want clubs and local communities to get involved in whatever way they can. We know how important local sports clubs are in helping more disabled people to get active and delivering sporting opportunities for all those who’ve been inspired by London. National Paralympic Day 2013 is a fantastic opportunity for clubs to raise their profile in the local community and to attract new members and supporters.”
Alice Hunt, Chief Executive Officer, Join In, said:
“Last summer’s Paralympic Games showed the world what can be achieved through hard work and determination, so it’s wonderful that Join In can team up with the British Paralympic Association one year on to celebrate those accomplishments once more at the very first National Paralympic Day. Just as with the Games last summer, events like those held for National Paralympic Day are made possible because of the work of volunteers, but thousands have told us they don’t know where to go to find out about opportunities to volunteer in their local community. Sports clubs and community groups are crying out for help and so at Join In we’re match-making people willing to give up their time to the organisations who need them most. This summer we’re unleashing an army of volunteers to enable the next generation of sporting heroes to flourish and make a difference to communities across the country. Join In is funded by the BIG Lottery Fund, a Cabinet Office grant and by commercial partners BT and Lloyds TSB. Without their pioneering support for volunteering in the UK, Join In couldn’t achieve the ambitious plans we have for this summer or beyond.”
Grace Hinde, Parasport Marketing Manager, said of the plans:
“We have a loyal following of thousands of disability-focussed or disability-friendly clubs across the UK registered on Deloitte Parasport, and we would love for them to feel included in the celebrations around National Paralympic Day. We do, however, also recognise that some clubs may not have the resource to be able to do anything big or to put on a session on the day itself. So to combat this we are suggesting that clubs do something in their regular training session and we have put together some suggestions for activities that are as simple and cost-effective as possible.”
Catherine Bayley, Head of Sponsorship at Deloitte said:
“We are very proud of our partnership with Parasport and are delighted with plans to encourage clubs to help the BPA and the nation celebrate National Paralympic Day. We have seen a huge amount of traffic come through the Deloitte Parasport website, increasing by 2000% during the Games last year so we hope National Paralympic Day further encourages people to use the site as a resource for finding out more about disability sport.”
Clubs should register the details on the Parasport website www.parasport.org.uk/npd. They will then receive a confirmation email containing a free ‘Club Toolkit’ containing advice on how they can advertise and promote their event, as well as posters and personalised adverts to place on their website or put up around their community.