In an official ceremony held on Tuesday (13 June) in Beijing, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and the Beijing 2022 Organising Committee signed an agreement for the fifth edition of the Paralympic Excellence Programme. The Excellence Programme will be delivered by the IPC Academy, a partnership between the IPC and the World Academy of Sport which aims to improve educational standards of sport throughout the Paralympic Movement.
Over the next five years, the IPC Academy will deliver a range of educational activities and programmes geared towards the planning and successful delivery of the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games. Beijing 2022 will be the fifth Organizing Committee to benefit from the Paralympic Excellence Programme, which was first launched in 2010. Successful programmes have already been implemented for Sochi 2014 and Rio 2016, whilst activities are ongoing with PyeongChang 2018 and Tokyo 2020.
The programme includes a variety of learning opportunities, aiming to cater for the needs of Paralympic Winter Games organizers across the life cycle of the planning and delivery of the Games:
• A range of educational workshops will deal with critical areas of Paralympic Games organization, such as accessibility, sustainable legacy, Paralympic marketing and communications, planning integration and IPC requirements and Paralympic stakeholders.
• Running alongside the workshops will be two people development programmes designed to increase awareness of Paralympic winter sport requirements and disability awareness within the Organizing Committee and its key stakeholders.
• In addition, delegates of the Beijing 2022 Organizing Committee will participate in both the PyeongChang 2018 and Tokyo 2020 Observers’ Programmes as part of the IPC Academy Campus. Participants will witness first-hand Games-time operational delivery.
• In the second half of 2018, the IPC Academy will host the Debriefing of the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing. This two-day event will focus on the most important and challenging elements of organizing the Paralympic Winter Games, client needs and lessons learned.
• Finally, in the final 12 months ahead of the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games, two simulation exercises will be organized with the dual purpose to test operational readiness specifically for Paralympic Winter Games and also educate in practice the hundreds of new staff who join the Organizing Committee in the last months.
Xavier Gonzalez, the IPC’s CEO, said: “We fully expect Beijing 2022 to take the Paralympic Winter Games to new levels and, to help support this, we will work with them to implement the IPC Academy Excellence Programme.
“The aim of the Programme is to share best practice, experience and key leanings from previous Games in both a theoretical and hands-on environment. Participants will find themselves attending interactive classroom sessions, going behind the scenes at the Paralympic Games and learning from a range of experts who have worked on previous Games. We believe this integrated approach to learning will create the best possible environment for Beijing 2022 to deliver outstanding Paralympic Winter Games.”
Chris Solly, Director of the World Academy of Sport, said: “The Paralympic Excellence Programme is now in its mature phase, offering a true ‘ecosystem’ of learning for the organizers of the Paralympic Games. By working closely with Information and Knowledge Management, along with the Paralympic Games Integration team and all related functional areas inside Beijing 2022, this represents a fully customized learning pathway for Paralympic Games Integration.
“We are delighted to be working with the Beijing 2022 team, as they continue to develop and deliver a highly customized learning program for all of their staff, delivery partners and contractors, with this representing another core piece of this important framework.”