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Australian Institute of Sport supports Paralympic sports, athletes with $115M grants

World Wheelchair Basketball Championship.
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The Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) will increase direct investment into Paralympic sport by more than $3million in 2021-22 and will extend the vast majority of current funding levels for able-bodied sports through to the end of June 2022.

“This gives sports funding clarity for the postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics, the 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympics and the 2022 Commonwealth Games. It is also a springboard towards Paris 2024.” said Australian Sports Commission Chair John Wylie.

“We are particularly pleased to also announce an increase of $3.02 million funding to Paralympic sports, which will benefit 13 sporting programs. Since 2012, the ASC has increased funding to Paralympic sports by 40 per cent. Paralympic sports in Australia now receive an equal or greater share of AIS funding on a comparable basis to other major Olympic and Paralympic nations. We are truly delighted this is the case. These are merit-based investments reflecting the achievements of our Paralympic athletes, but they are also further recognition of how they inspire our nation,” Mr Wylie said.

ASC Commissioner and Paralympic champion Kurt Fearnley said the funding announcement was vital for the future recognition and growth of Paralympic sport.

“It is 20 years since the Sydney 2000 Paralympics, which helped create an incredible legacy for Paralympic sport in Australia. We’ve worked hard to maintain that culture of success and the requirement to be a Paralympic athlete now means you need your heart, soul and life committed to that sport. So we’re investing and creating new pathways to ensure we keep our reputation as one of the strongest Para-sport communities in the world,” Mr Fearnley said.

“A key feature of this Paralympic funding is that it’s being directed straight to National Sporting Organisations so that sports can take real ownership in developing their Paralympic programs. That’s important to ensure we raise the prominence of Paralympic programs right across Australian sport.”

AIS CEO Peter Conde said the overall funding decisions achieve the right balance between providing sports with longer-term certainty but also providing flexibility for performance-based changes in the lead-up to Paris 2024.

“We’re in a unique situation where this current Games cycle has extended to five years, so we will only have three years between Tokyo and Paris” Mr Conde said.

“The AIS will continue discussions with sports with the aim of announcing the remainder of funding for the complete Paris cycle by December 2021.

The 13 Paralympic programs receiving an increase in funding are: Archery; Athletics; Basketball; Bowls; Cycling; Paddle; Equestrian; Rowing; Rugby; Triathlon; Table Tennis; Shooting; and Swimming.

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