Now that the pageantry and competition for some of the world’s best athletes are over for the 30th Olympics in London, England, the city is preparing to host another Olympiad that is even more inspiring than the one that just ended.
The 2012 London Paralympics Games will take place from August 29th through September 9th. London is the spiritual birthplace of the Paralympics Movement. This will be the biggest Paralympics Games ever, featuring 4,200 athletes from 160 countries competing in 20 sports. According to the International Paralympic Committee,
The IPC Athletes’ Council is the collective voice of Paralympics athletes within the IPC and the greater Paralympics Movement. As the liaison between IPC decision-makers and Paralympics athletes, the IPC Athletes’ Council works to provide effective input into decision-making at all levels of the organization. To this end, the IPC Athletes’ Council works to ensure effective athlete representation on all IPC committees and commissions as well as to create other opportunities for athlete representation both within and outside the IPC. For example, the IPC Athletes’ Council enjoys cross representation with the IOC Athletes’ Commission.
The IPC Athletes’ Council seeks to ensure that elections are organized in a democratic and fair manner. It focuses on education and awareness initiatives aimed at maximum participation, as well as overseeing the Athletes’ Council election process during the Paralympics Games. Some of the competitive events include Ice Sledge Hockey, Swimming, Archery, Biathlon and Cross-Country Skiing, Wheelchair Fencing, running and cycling.
Mandeville, the Paralympics mascot named after Stoke Mandeville Hospital, has been actively involved in “Get Set,” London’s 2012 education program.