A great 2017 – and an even better 2018!
– Looking back and ahead –
As 2017 draws to a close, it is worthwhile thinking about our achievements this year that include a number of “firsts”:
ParaVolley Africa and ParaVolley Pan America had their first elections for the Board positions (to date their Boards have been temporary, approved by the World ParaVolley Board, but awaiting the 2017 election opportunity)
We delivered the first World Super 6 event for women in Hangzhou that included prize-money for the first time (and that recently was named by the IPC as one of the top 50 events)
We evaluated 466 athletes under the new Classification scheme thanks to our team of professional Classifiers who volunteered their time at the various events
We successfully completed the first year of the change-over to Molten volleyballs for competitions and development programs
We signed an MOU with the International Wheelchair & Amputee Sports Federation that basically sets out the potential ways that we will cooperate in the future, with a focus on Standing Beach Volleyball
We established the Beach Volleyball Commission with a view to having Zone Championships in Standing Beach Volleyball in 2018-19 and a World Championship in 2019 – and maybe we can eventually get Standing Beach Volleyball into the Paralympic Games!
World ParaVolley was represented at the international level at various meetings and conferences, including the IPC General Assembly and the Association of Paralympic Sports Organisations in Abu Dhabi
We established the first Development Centre – the World ParaVolley Hangzhou Development Centre – that will provide a focus for activities of all kinds
The ParaVolley Asia Oceania Board and the ParaVolley Europe Board have new people involved to provide the necessary leadership
The four Zones delivered great Zonal Championships in Croatia, Canada, China and Rwanda
We appointed Jonathan Moore as the Technical Delegate for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games after an exhaustive election process
We appointed Stephen Giugni and Laurent Torrecillas as Assistant Sport Directors after advertising the positions
We have changed the structure so the Athletes Commission reports to the President and plan to have an Athlete Commission Chair be a full voting member of the Board from July 2018
We achieved a total of over 50 official Members
Looking ahead to 2018, we continue to have busy competition calendar – and that is the way we like it as this is good for the athletes – the highlight of which will be:
the Sitting Volleyball World Championships (thanks to Nevobo for their support)
the World Championships Qualifier (thanks to KOR for their support)
the staging of two World Super 6 events (thanks to IRI and CHN for their support)
On other fronts in 2018 we are:
commencing our fundraising campaign based on the charity status we have obtained in the USA
delivering the Agitos Foundation Classification and Coaches Courses in Korea
planning governance changes for the General Assembly to consider
undertaking a refreshment of the membership of our Commissions
holding a face-to-face Board Planning meeting in the Netherlands
There is more to be done – we still need to focus on more human resource development (Classifiers, Coaches and Media experts), development activities, promotion techniques and we still need a Communications Manager to be appointed.
In conclusion, thank you for your support in 2017 and all the very best for your 2018 plans and aspirations!
Barry Couzner OAM