“It was great to see that one of our youngest and smallest NPCs, Montenegro taking the initiative to have this meeting and they have shown their organising capabilities and their great hospitality.”
Representatives from six Balkan National Paralympic Committees met in Podgorica, Montenegro, from 5-7 April for a regional workshop, facilitated by PlayAble and supported by the IPC.
The workshop was a first step towards enabling the NPCs in the Balkan Region to further develop their organisation and athlete performances through regional collaboration.
“It was great to see that one of our youngest and smallest NPCs, Montenegro taking the initiative to have this meeting and they have shown their organising capabilities and their great hospitality,” said IPC Governing Board member Rita van Driel.
“From the beginning the participants made it clear that it was good to meet and to talk, but that they really wanted to take actions.”
After two days of discussions, the NPCs of Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Montenegro, Romania and Slovenia decided to focus on two objectives.
The first was to improve coaching expertise in athletics, swimming, table tennis, wheelchair basketball, shooting and goalball by organising sport-specific clinics.
The second was to improve the performance of athletes under 25 in the same sports by organising sport-specific camps along with the coaching clinics.
“After the very positive work I would like to thank everyone for sharing good experiences, knowledge and the will to work together for the better development of Paralympic sport in our region,” said Ilia Lalov, President NPC Bulgaria.
Each NPC went back home with the task of hosting a camp in the sport where they have some expertise and accessible accommodation to host it.
The first camp for wheelchair basketball will be hosted by NPC Romania in Cluj in July.
“It was very good to share thoughts and experience and I’m very satisfied that we have concrete steps now,” said Mustafa Demir, President of NPC Bosnia & Herzogovina