IPC Conference Begins in Athens

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Conference got underway on Friday (22 November) in Athens, Greece, with presentations on the Agitos Foundation and the new IPC Sports Strategic Plans, before candidates in Sunday’s IPC Governing Board elections took centre stage to present their manifestos.

Around 450 people from over 150 countries, made up of IPC members, observers and media, are in Athens for the 16th IPC General Assembly and Conference which continues through to Sunday (24 November).

From mid-morning until early afternoon on Friday, all candidates standing in Sunday’s IPC Governing Board elections gave short presentations to the IPC membership. First up were the two British candidates for IPC President – Alan Dickson, who was nominated by – Cerebral Palsy International Sports and Recreation Association (CPISRA), and current President Sir Philip Craven, the British Paralympic Association’s nominee.

The two Vice Presidential candidates – Ann Cody of NPC USA and Andrew Parsons of NPC Brazil – soon followed. The afternoon session saw 23 of the 25 candidates for the 10 IPC Member at Large positions each give a short five minute presentation.

Meanwhile, IPC published strategic plans for the nine Paralympic sports it acts as the International Federation for. The plans will strengthen the Paralympic Games programme, develop athlete opportunities and pathways and ensure greater visibility and promotion of the sports between the Paralympic Games.

The strategic plans for athletics, powerlifting, shooting and swimming cover 2013-2016, whilst ice sledge hockey, cross-country skiing, biathlon, alpine skiing and snowboard are covered from 2013-2018.

“The goal is for IPC sports to reach self-sustainability between 2017 and 2024. The timing will depend on the individual progress of the sport and the relationship with the Olympic equivalent International Federation, where relevant,” IPC Chief Executive Officer Xavier Gonzalez told delegates at the IPC General Assembly and Conference in Athens, Greece.

The plans were drawn up following a consultative process with Sport Technical Committees, sporting communities, IPC departments and external consultants. They cover six key areas: Paralympic Games and World Championships, athlete development, Paralympic brand, funding, organisational capacity, and strategic partnerships.

“The overall priorities for all IPC sports are to develop multi-year competition plans, develop a strategy for each sport to increase their visibility through the development of a marketing and broadcast plan for each to capitalise on the IPC sports brand,” Gonzalez revealed.

Another key aspect of the plans is to develop classifiers and technical officials, strengthen the anti-doping and classification codes as well as foster relationships with Olympic International Federations.

The strategic plans for all sports will be driven by a common vision, mission and values

For more information about the 2013 IPC General Assembly and Conference, please visit: http://www.paralympic.org/events/general-assembly-2013

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