Paralympics New Zealand (PNZ) and iconic snacking brand, Cadbury, on Wednesday (30 September) announced a Major Partnership in support of New Zealand para-athletes on the road to the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.
Cadbury is the third major brand to join the Paralympic Family in just four weeks, after the signing of Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) and New Zealand seafood company, Sanford. PNZ believes this huge wave of support is a ‘coming of age’ for Para-Sport in New Zealand.
Fiona Allan, PNZ’s Chief Executive said: “Cadbury is one of New Zealand’s most recognisable and influential brands and we could not be more delighted to welcome them on board. The London 2012 Paralympic Games changed the face of para-sport globally. In New Zealand, our vision is to make para-sport events more visible and accessible as we count down to the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. To have brands of the stature of Cadbury, ACC and Sanford commit to this vision through Major Partnerships with us is an enormous stamp of approval and a real ‘coming of age’ for para-sport.”
James Kane, Cadbury Sales Director NZ, said: “We are thrilled to show our support for New Zealand’s Paralympians and para-athletes by getting on board as a Major Partner of Paralympics New Zealand. We believe these are high performing athletes and amazing individuals, who deserve all the investment and support possible as they work towards achieving their dreams. Over the coming year, we will be working with the New Zealand public to help them show their support and joy as the team builds towards Rio 2016.”
Michael Johnson, three-time Paralympian and shooting medallist, said: “Next year I hope to represent New Zealand for the fourth time at a Paralympic Games. In my career, I have seen a huge shift in the level of interest in para-sport in this country and around the world. London 2012 was particularly pivotal and I thought absolutely nothing would top that. But the momentum I can feel building now, with brands like Cadbury, ACC and Sanford already throwing their support behind us, makes me think that Rio 2016 will leave London 2012 in the shade!”
Just over three weeks ago, PNZ and its Partners marked exactly ‘1 Year To Go’ until the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games by launching PNZ’s new awareness and fundraising programme, the Spirit of Gold® Initiative. Three hundred and sixty five children in home-made gold supporters’ costumes posed for photos with top kiwi Paralympians, including Michael Johnson, Sophie Pascoe, Mary Fisher, Emma Foy and Laura Thompson, before taking part in a Para-Fun Day to learn about Para-Sport and disability. The Spirit of Gold® Initiative is a new long-term campaign designed to increase awareness and raise funds to support Para-Sport in the community and in the short term, help fund the team on the road to Rio 2016.
The Rio 2016 Paralympic Games will take place from the 7 - 18 September 2016. Taking place every four years, the Paralympic Games are the world’s largest multi-sport event for athletes with an impairment. More than 4,350 athletes from over 170 countries are expected to compete in 22 sports, with 526 medal events.
As a charity, Paralympics New Zealand relies on a mix of donations and fundraisers, government funding and support from the business community to run our sport and community programmes.
For more information or to donate to Paralympics New Zealand, visit their website.