With this year’s summer Games delayed, our country’s Paralympic athletes are facing a challenging time. You can make a difference and support their journeys towards wins.
Every four years, Paralympians display their skills and compete at the highest international level in their respective summer or winter sports. Watching these unmatched athletes is a huge source of inspiration. Unfortunately due to COVID-19, this year’s Tokyo Summer Paralympic Games have been delayed a year (now scheduled for August 24 to September 5, 2021).
You can still honour the amazing athletes who will be missing the Games this summer by supporting their ongoing training and journey towards the medal podium. We reached out to former Paralympian and CHIMP: Charitable Impact Foundation (Canada) Counsel Josh Vander Vies for insight into why and how donors can make a difference.
“The Paralympics represent the indomitable human will and our ability to perform in the face of adversity. Such massive symbolism might seem trite in its magnitude, but it is more relevant now than ever,” said Vander Vies.
Vander Vies is a former international boccia player who took home a bronze medal from the 2012 Paralympic Games in London. He has held several leadership positions in Canadian and international sport, most recently being selected by the Canadian Paralympic Committee to serve as assistant chef de mission in Tokyo.
Vander Vies played elite boccia worldwide—a sport that resembles bocce ball played by athletes in wheelchairs. He believes strongly in the power of sport and its impact on success. His athletic wins and achievements gave him the confidence to tackle other major goals, like graduating university and going on to law school, then building a family.
Paralympic athletes are facing a challenging time
With the impact that sport can have, the delay in the Paralympic Games is challenging to say the least. Athletes are undertaking to extend their training, often amid other life demands.
“Athletes are facing a major disruption to achieving their-life long goals and the challenge cannot be overstated. While athletes grapple with the delay, I think the teams of the world are starting to understand that—though public health is bigger than sport—what sport represents will eventually triumph, even over a global pandemic,” said Vander Vies.
Donors can support athletes’ journeys to success
With Vander Vies’ help, we created a list of Canadian organizations that support Paralympic athletes. The important work of these charities continues despite delays in competition opportunities. Check the list below to learn more and give through Charitable Impact.
Aside from giving charitably, becoming a fan of the Paralympics builds an exciting movement of inclusion. “By tuning in and becoming fans, learning more about your favourite athletes and the incredible histories of Paralympic sports, you will directly help future Paralympians reach their potential,” said Vander Vies.
So, set your reminder for 2021 to catch sporting moments you won’t want to miss.
Where you can give
The Paralympic Foundation of Canada: The Foundation was established to ensure that the programs, equipment and people are in place to propel more Canadians with a disability all the way from the playground to the Paralympic podium. The Foundation raises funds to solely support the programs and activities of the Canadian Paralympic Committee.
CAN Fund: CAN Fund is a not-for-profit organization created to fill a funding gap and give our Canadian athletes (summer, winter, able-bodied, and Paralympic) the financial support they need to train and compete for Canada.
Jumpstart Charities: Founded in 2005, Jumpstart Charities helps kids overcome financial and accessibility barriers to sport and recreation in an effort to provide inclusive play for kids of all abilities.
If you’d like to give to support this or any other cause, we are here to help. Through Charitable Impact, you can give to any of the over 86,000 registered charities across Canada. By setting up a free Impact Account, our powerful search engine will connect you to charities—from familiar favourites to new gems. Plus, get personalized recommendations through your Impact Account, your one place to easily track all your giving. Add funds, then take the time and space needed to plan your impact.