Guangzhou rolls out more 2010 Para Games preparations
2009-September-14 Source:
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After the State Council approved the organising committee for the Guangzhou 2010 Asian Para Games last month, local officials have pledged to hold a successful event as part of the Asian Games next year.

Director of State General Administration of Sport Liu Peng was named president of the committee, with Guangdong Governor Huang Huahua selected as executive president.

The Para Games will be held in Guangzhou from December 12 to 19 next year - half a month after the 16th Asian Games - featuring some 3,000 athletes from 45 Asian countries and regions competing in 19 sports.

About 2,000 team officials, 1,100 technical officials and 2,000 members of domestic and international media are expected for the event, said Zhang Guangning, mayor of Guangzhou and vice-president of the organising committee for the Games.

Fifteen sports including athletics, swimming, archery, shooting, wheelchair fencing, powerlifting, judo, goalball, 7-a-side football, cycling, wheelchair tennis, table tennis, sitting volleyball, wheelchair basketball and 5-a-side football will also be held at the 2012 London Paralympics, so Guangzhou results will be used as qualifying points for the London competition.

"Preparations for the Games have been underway since last November and are now in full swing," Zhang said.

The selection of emblems and mascots is in its final stages and the official website in both Chinese and English has been launched.

Zhang called on officials involved to dedicate themselves to preparations for both the Asian Games and Asian Para Games and share resources.

"The Para Games are as important as the Asian Games and will be a significant opportunity to promote the welfare of people with disabilities," he said.

In his congratulation letter to the Para Games Organising Committee, International Paralympic Committee President Sir Philip Craven expressed confidence in the success of the Guangzhou Games.

Zhang emphasised that work for the Para Games should be carried out in accordance with the Asian Paralympic Committee Handbook, host city contract and other special requirements of the Para Games.

The upcoming event will be the first Asian Para Games, replacing the Far East and South Pacific Games for the Disabled that have been held nine times in Asian countries and regions.

Guangzhou won the bid for Asian Para Games in December 2006. "The successful bid shows Guangzhou's understanding for people with disabilities, which also enhances its standing among Asian cities," Zhang said.

There will be 26 venues for the Games including the Guangdong Olympic Sports Centre, Tianhe Sports Centre and facilities in University Town and Asian Games Town.

"All competition and training venues have handicap-accessible facilities," said Li Naizhen, a Para Games organising official.

Guangzhou will also have religious facilities available for athletes and officials.

By September 9, more than 214,000 people had applied to become volunteers for the Guangzhou 2010 Asian and Para Games, the organising committee said.

"Guangzhou citizens have turned out in record numbers since recruitment was launched in April to help ensure a successful running of both games," Zhang said.

To facilitate the volunteer work for the Para Games, the organising committee has teamed with the Guangzhou Disabled Association since April to give sign language training to more than 2,000 college students. A sign language training book has also been published for volunteers.

A "Thumbs Up" campaign launched in June is part of preparations to offer a variety of volunteer services to the public, which will be available at the airport, railway stations, parks, hotels, major intersections, bus stops and metro stations.

(Source: GAGOC)

Editor: Miranda
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