"This partnership is an important milestone to the success of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games and also to leave legacies towards a more inclusive society through Tokyo 2020."
The development arm of the International Paralympic Committee, the Agitos Foundation, will partner with the Nippon Foundation Paralympic Support Centre (NFPSC) to promote inclusion and participation in Asia ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
The NFPSC will invest EUR 800,000 into raising awareness and understanding of the Paralympic Movement, and training people within Para sport organisations across Asia over the next four years.
The NFPSC hopes to contribute to a successful Paralympic Games in 2020 through the introduction of dedicated teaching in schools, and by supplementing support already given to Asian National Paralympic Committees (NPCs) by the Agitos Foundation.
Georg Schlachtenberger, Director of the Agitos Foundation, said: “I am delighted to welcome the Nippon Foundation to the growing number of organisations who are contributing to the development of Para sport.
“Together we are working on spreading the Paralympic values of courage, determination, inspiration and equality and making sure that the next generation knows all about Para sport before the Paralympics head to Japan in 2020.
“Combined with our joint work in the Asian region, helping NPCs to develop their capacity and expertise, we are sure to achieve some incredible results over the next four years.”
Yasushi Yamawaki, Chairperson of the NFPSC, said: “I am very excited about the joint work with Agitos Foundation to promote inclusion and increase levels of participation in Para sport in Japan and the Asian region.
“This partnership is an important milestone to the success of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games and also to leave legacies towards a more inclusive society through Tokyo 2020.
“We strongly believe in the importance of this investment for our future. And there is no doubt that this education programme will lead us not only to raise awareness but also to achieve our ultimate goal to fill all Paralympic venues at their max capacity!
“We will work together with Agitos Foundation as well as the Japan Paralympic Committee [JPC] and NPCs over next four years.”
In October 2016, the Agitos Foundation, NFPSC, and the JPC will pilot a series of teaching materials aimed at school children aged between 6-12 years old. They will contain activities around the Paralympic values and Para sport, a teacher’s guide and evaluation tools. The first units will be rolled out in Japan before the full version is piloted in other countries ahead of the official launch.
The NFPSC is also supporting Para sport development across Asia. In February 2016 a collaboration between them, the Agitos Foundation, Japan Sports Council, Sport for Tomorrow (an initiative of the Japanese government), and the JPC, was launched to strengthen the management of NPCs in 11 countries in South East Asia.
Applications made to the Agitos Foundation’s 2016 Grant Support Programme that relate to Asia will also be considered for additional support from the NFPSC.