has successfully hosted the first ParaFed Sports Forum in Christchurch, bringing together 14 representatives from various organisations to discuss the delivery of quality sports opportunities to physically disabled people.
The two day Forum was held on the 5– 6 July at the YMCA Bishopdale and attended by eight regional ParaFeds, Paralympics New Zealand and the Halberg Disability Sport Foundation.
A variety of topics were covered, from how to set up grassroots programmes at a local level to what is happening in high performance at the elite level.
The sessions were a great way to launch what promises to be an exciting new future for the ParaFed Network. There are now more dedicated ParaFeds Sports Co-ordinators across the country than ever before and this means there will be an even greater role in the delivery of sport to the physically disability community within the regions.
Presenters included staff from Paralympics New Zealand, Athletics New Zealand, the Halberg Disability Sport Foundation, the New Zealand Defence Force (Invictus Games Team) and ParaFed Canterbury.
The Forum was a key strategic outcome of a National ParaFed meeting in 2015, which identified some required actions to enable the growing network to be more effective and share best practices.
As the ParaFed Network has grown, it was felt that a Sports Forum would enable an exchange of information so that all would be more aware of the disability sports sector and what opportunities there are within each region as well as how to turn discussion into action.
The attendance by the Halberg Disability Sports Foundation and Paralympics New Zealand ensured that all the major organizations within the sector where represented and enabled the ParaFed’s to hear what these two organizations are doing at the grass roots level.
The ParaFed Network would like to acknowledge the support of the Sport New Zealand ‘No Exceptions’ Fund which enabled the Forum to be able to deliver a professional and effective two days for all attendees.