Brazilian Olympic and Paralympic Movements Together for Rio 2016
The union between the Olympic and paralympic movements is one of the fundamental aspects for Rio de Janeiro’s bid to host the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The successful experience and harmony between the Brazilian Olympic Committee (BOC) and the Brazilian Paralympic Committee (BPC) were once again proved this Wednesday, March 12, during the Rio 2007 Knowledge Transfer Seminar (Debriefing), carried out in Rio de Janeiro. BCP representatives confirmed their support to the Rio 2016 bid and evaluated details of the organization and carrying out of the Rio 2007 Parapan American Games, which for the first time were held in the same city, immediately after the Pan American Games.
The work carried out in the Rio 2007 paralympic edition is a great ally in the conception of the 2016 Olympic project. “In the Rio 2007 Parapan, 1115 athletes represented 25 countries. So, Rio de Janeiro is the only city among those bidding to host the Olympic Games with experience in carrying out a big multisports competition. The city certainly benefited from the learning acquired before, during and after the competition, which is very positive in an Olympic application,” explains Carlos Roberto Osório, secretary general of CO-RIO and Rio 2016.
The Rio 2007 Knowledge Transfer Seminar, which will last until March 15, is internationally known as ‘Debriefing’. The initiative was introduced by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) after the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, as a way to make experiences in Olympic organization known. This is the first time in the Pan American sports history that a Debriefing details the organization of the major multisports competition in the Americas, which turns it into an additional legacy for sports.
“Rio 2007 was a milestone in sports in Americas. For the first time, the success of an edition of the Pan American Games was complemented by the carrying out of the Parapan American Games. The Debriefing is a great opportunity for us to discuss, based on the acquired knowledge, details that may improve new partnerships between the Olympic and paralympic movements,” stated Carlos Arthur Nuzman, president of CO-RIO and of the Rio 2016 Bid Committee.
The third day of the Seminar, dedicated exclusively to paralympic sports, was attended by Andrew Parsons, president of the American Paralympic Committee (APC), and Vital Severino, president of the Brazilian Paralympic Committee (BPC). “Rio 2007 was very important for Brazilian sports because it provided equal rights between Olympic and paralympic sports. The athletes were in contact with the same facilities, the same Village and could show a potential till then unknown to the great Brazilian public. In Rio 2007, national sports were treated as a whole, which shows integration. That will help us a lot in planning the Rio 2016 Olympic Games,” praised Vital Severino, who called the Debriefing a great experience.
Andrew Parson, president of APC, commented that Rio 2007 proved to be innovative since the bid process. “The CO-RIO standard was always one of equality towards athletes and bodies. This Seminar provided an additional benefit to paralympic sports. We were very happy with this invitation, because we know that by sharing information we are contributing to develop sports in the Americas. By carrying out the Parapan, Rio de Janeiro is right in the heart of the paralympic movement in the Americas,” Parsons said.
The CO-RIO secretary general said that the importance of the Rio 2007 Parapan American Games can be decisive for an Olympic application, as it is a differential for Brazil and Rio de Janeiro to turn the Olympic dream into a reality. “Rio de Janeiro passed with praise the tests it underwent in the organization of a big event like the Parapan. We learned a lot and, today, we can ensure that the city and the Country have know-how and human resources to aspire to even higher dreams,” Osório evaluated.
Five Organizing Committees of Games will take part in the Rio 2007 Debriefing as of this Thursday, March13: Pan American Games Guadalajara 2011 (Mexico), Central America and Caribbean Games Mayagüez 2010 (Puerto Rico), South American Games Medellin 2010 (Colombia), Bolivarianos Sucre Games 2009 (Bolivia) and Commonwealth Games New Delhi 2010 (India).