By Gary Anderson

August 5 - PARALYMPIC DAY CELEBSLocal disability sports clubs and organisations around the UK are being urged to join in the celebration of National Paralympic Day on September 7 by the British Paralympic Association (BPA) and its partner Deloitte Parasport.

The BPA and Deloitte Parasport, an online resource designed to help disabled people find high-quality sporting opportunities in their local area, have called on clubs to organise special sessions designed to showcase their sport and talent of their athletes, as well as provide "come and try'" sessions to allow people to experience various sports for the first time.

The move is designed to coincide with National Paralympic Day, announced by Mayor of London Boris Johnson last month, and will see a day of celebration taking place at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London, to mark the one year anniversary of the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

The free event, organised by the Mayor of London and the BPA along with The London Legacy Development Corporation, will see leading Paralympic athletes and disabled performers taking part in a range of activities and sports, family-friendly come-and-try opportunities for a number of Paralympic sports, and the Mayor's Liberty Arts Festival, an annual showcase of deaf and disabled artists which is also celebrating its tenth year.

The Olympic Park will play host to celebrations on Septembber 7 to mark National Paralympic DayThe Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is due play host to celebrations for National Paralympic Day on September 7 as part of the celebrations marking the first anniversary of London 2012

"We're really excited to be offering people across the UK the opportunity to relive the wonder of London 2012 through National Paralympic Day," said BPA chief executive Tim Hollingsworth.

"In this first year, we really want clubs and local communities to get involved in whatever way they can.

"We know how important local sports clubs are in helping more disabled people to get active and delivering sporting opportunities for all those who've been inspired by London.

"National Paralympic Day 2013 is a fantastic opportunity for clubs to raise their profile in the local community and to attract new members and supporters."

There are almost 3,000 clubs on the Deloitte Parasport database and each one is being encouraged to do something special to mark the occasion.

"We have a loyal following of thousands of disability-focussed or disability-friendly clubs across the UK registered on Deloitte Parasport, and we would love for them to feel included in the celebrations around National Paralympic Day," said Parasport marketing manager, Grace Hinde.

"We do, however, also recognise that some clubs may not have the resource to be able to do anything big or to put on a session on the day itself.

"So to combat this we are suggesting that clubs do something in their regular training session and we have put together some suggestions for activities that are as simple and cost-effective as possible."

David Weir was one of the British athletes that shone at last years London 2012 ParalympicsDavid Weir was one of the British athletes that shone at last years London 2012 Paralympics

The online resource also works to ensure that clubs that are signed up promote coaching and volunteering opportunities within para-sport through the Join In network, which aims to build in the work of the Games Makers at last summer's Games.

"Last summer's Paralympic Games showed the world what can be achieved through hard work and determination, so it's wonderful that Join In can team up with the British Paralympic Association one year on to celebrate those accomplishments once more at the very first National Paralympic Day," said Alice Hunt, chief executive officer of Join In, which is funded by the BIG Lottery Fund, a Cabinet Office grant and by commercial partners BT and Lloyds TSB.

"Just as with the Games last summer, events like those held for National Paralympic Day are made possible because of the work of volunteers, but thousands have told us they don't know where to go to find out about opportunities to volunteer in their local community.

"Sports clubs and community groups are crying out for help and so at Join In we're match-making people willing to give up their time to the organisations who need them most.

"This summer we're unleashing an army of volunteers to enable the next generation of sporting heroes to flourish and make a difference to communities across the country."

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

Related Stories
July 2013: 
National Paralympic Day to be held on September 7 to celebrate London 2012, announces Mayor