Bourgoin Jallieu, France hosts first World Abilitysport Governing Board meeting of 2024


The World Abilitysport Governing Board gathered in Bourgoin Jallieu, France for two days of meetings from 22 to 23 March 2024.

From 22 to 23 March, the World Abilitysport Governing Board gathered in Bourgoin Jallieu, France for the first time since December’s elections in the scenic setting of Stade Pierre Rajon.

The first meeting for newly elected members, Maitree Kongruang (THA), Liene Apine (LAT) and new Honorary Treasurer, Ian Donald (GBR) covered topics from membership to finances and our sports and Games.

The Governing Board received a warm welcome from local dignitaries and representatives of the region, Sandrine Chaix Ferrete, Vice President of the Regional Council of Auvergne Rhône Alpes, Vincent Chriqui, Mayor of Bourgoin Jallieu and Vice President of the Council Department Isère, Jean Pierre Girard, first Assistant of the Mayor of Bourgoin Jallieu and Member of the Regional Council of Auvergne Rhône Alpes. Also in attendance was Aurélien Leprêtre, Assistant to the Mayor, Lorène Bussi of the sport administrative of Bourgoin Jallieu and Maryse Maulin, President of Maulin Ski and National French ski areas. The delegation was introduced to the Board Members and gained an insight into World Abilitysport’s future vision.

World Abilitysport meet with representatives of the region.
World Abilitysport meet with representatives of the region.

President Rudi Van den Abbeele, went on to welcome the Board to the city and congratulated Board Member, Maitree Kongruang on his newly elected position as President of SPADT Thailand.

As the meeting began, the Board were delighted to welcome three new organisations to the World Abilitysport membership, Czech Para Dance, El Salvador NPC and Para Dance Federation of the Republic of Kazakhstan, ahead of General Assembly ratification.

As discussions turned to the World Abilitysport Games programme, the Board were pleased to welcome the General Coordinator of NPC Türkiye, Serkan Baltaci, who presented the NPCs 2024-2028 Strategic Plan with a focus on Para sport event hosting. NPC Türkiye and World Abilitysport agreed to work more collaboratively, and a delegation will be visiting three Turkish cities in June in view of hosting a World Abilitysport Games in the coming years.

World Abilitysport meet with Serkan Baltaci of Turkish NPC
World Abilitysport meet with Serkan Baltaci of Türkiye NPC

President Rudi Van den Abbeele said, ‘NPC Türkiye’s commitment to the Paralympic Movement and creating opportunities for athletes with impairments is exciting for World Abilitysport and the Movement as a whole. We look forward to visiting Türkiye and to working more collaboratively with this dynamic organisation in the coming years.’

Also discussed was the planned Membership Consultation ahead of the finalised World Abilitysport Strategic Plan 2024-2028 in which members will play a vital role in shaping the future direction and offerings of the organisation.

The Governing Board over the following two days went on to make crucial decisions towards the future development and growth of World Abilitysport. The Board will meet again remotely on their monthly calls ahead of an in-person meeting in the autumn.