The Australian Federal Government announced an injection of $12 million in new funding for its para athletes ahead of the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
$8 million will be aimed at ‘effectively managing the planning, coordination and delivery of the Australian Paralympic Team’ aiming for success in Tokyo, while an additional $4 million will be directed to the nation’s Paralympic Victorian base in Tullamarine. A Community, Education and Events Center is to be constructed at the site will feature accessible accommodation and training facilities for Para-athletes and teams as well as a Paralympic museum.
The funding announcement coincides with the overall re-branding of the former Australian Paralympic Committee into the new name of Paralympics Australia.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, “This new investment from the Federal Government will assist with the significant costs associated with delivering an Australian team of this size and complexity to the world’s premier event for athletes with a disability. It also recognizes the Australian Paralympic Team’s unique and burgeoning place within Australian sport and the value it brings to the Australian people.
“I am proud that the Australian Government will be the key partner in ensuring the Australian Paralympic Team has the best possible chance to shine on the world stage in Tokyo. Our Paralympic hopefuls can now prepare with confidence, knowing the funds and support that they need and deserve to represent our country are secure.”
Paralympics Australia President Jock O’Callaghan stated,“This new investment is a resounding vote of confidence from the Federal Government in the ability of Paralympics Australia to deliver an outstanding return on investment and it confirms the evolving position of Paralympic sport within Australian society.
“I believe Para-sport and Para-athletes have come of age in Australia. The growing appreciation and respect for our Paralympians and the desire for greater equity and inclusion of Para-sport becomes more evident every day.
“This support will help to continue our wave of momentum heading towards Tokyo 2020 and beyond, so the benefits of sport continue to expand for people with disability, and ultimately lead to greater equity in all areas of life.”
AP CEO Lynne Anderson said, “This Federal Government funding, along with our valued ongoing relationship with Sport Australia, is a huge boost in an ongoing challenge to attract government, corporate and community support.”
“We will continue to work until our Paralympic hopefuls can prepare for each Summer and Winter Games without the worries that come with financial pressure and uncertainty.”