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The fourth edition of the Asian Youth Para Games will be hosted for the first time in the kingdom in December, writes Mai Al Khatib-Camille.
The 2021 Asian Para Games, set for December 1-10, is a multi-sport event held for athletes with disability and is being organised in conjunction with the Bahrain Paralympic Committee (BPC), with government support.
The BPC is determined to use the games as a platform to develop the Paralympic movement in the kingdom. Its chairman Shaikh Mohammed bin Duaij Al Khalifa said he was proud and honoured to have won the bid to host the event.
He said: “This is a testament to our mission of providing the infrastructure for people with impairments to continue integrating them into society, nurture their abilities and position our nation at the forefront of the paralympic movement.”
An estimated 800 athletes under 20 are expected to compete in nine sports consisting of athletics, badminton, boccia, goalball, para taekwondo, powerlifting, swimming, table tennis and wheelchair basketball.
The sporting event will take place across numerous venues in Khalifa Sports City, a multi-use stadium in Isa Town, and Isa Sports City, the national indoor facility.
Asian Paralympic Committee (APC) president Majid Rashed said: “The APC’s new vision is to ‘Make for an inclusive Asia through Para-sport’ and I can think of no better place to start achieving that than with the region’s youth.
“We’re delighted that the Bahrain Paralympic Committee has put together such a strong bid to host the next Asian Youth Para Games and we offer our thanks to them and the government for supporting the next generation of Asian para-athletes.
“Providing opportunities for young para-athletes to compete in a multi-sport environment will hopefully inspire them to continue on their sporting journey which may lead ultimately to the Paralympic Games.”