Volunteers Needed for World Championships for Athletes with a Disability to Be Held at Connecticut College in July, 2005

The Cerebral Palsy International Sports and Recreation Association (CP-ISRA) World Championships, a world-class athletic competition for people with cerebral palsy-related physical disabilities, will be held at Connecticut College in New London, CT, June 27 - July 10, 2005, and 2,000 volunteers are needed to assist the athletes.

The world’s top athletes with cerebral palsy and other related physical disabilities will come together at the Championships to compete in the sports of Bowls, Cross Country, Cycling, Powerlifting, Slalom, Soccer, Swimming, Table Tennis, and Track & Field. Approximately 750-1,000 athletes from 36 countries, including the United States, are expected to compete in the World Championships.

Volunteers are needed to assist the athletes during the various sports competitions, as well as with Registration, Opening and Closing Ceremonies, Computer Operations, Concessions, Hospitality/VIP Hosting, Media Relations, Medical Assistance, Social Activities, Team Relations, Transportation, and Wheelchair/Equipment Repair, as well as other activities.

“The number of volunteers needed for this event is staggering,” said Ron Loomis, Coordinator of Volunteers, who was also the Coordinator of Volunteers for OPSAIL2000CT, which involved 3,600 volunteers. “For soccer games alone, we need 50 volunteers for each shift, and a total of 200 for all activities during the morning and afternoon shifts.”

With so many sports being contested at one time, the 2005 CP-ISRA World Championships will utilize multiple venues, including Connecticut College’s pool, field house, Dawley Field, Silfen Track, and the 1941 Room. The track events for Cycling will be held at the Kissena Velodrome in New York City and the Cycling road races and time trials will take place at Harkness Memorial Park in Waterford, CT. The Bowls events will be held at Elizabeth Park in Hartford, CT. In addition, the Championships will require approximately 2,000 volunteers besides regular event staff.

“This will be the largest number of people with cerebral palsy-related disabilities gathered together in one place at any one time in the United States,” said World Championships Director Bill Wilkie. “It's sure to be the most exciting event of its kind ever, and we know that the volunteers who assist them and the spectators who come to watch and cheer on the athletes will come away from the competition with a new appreciation for the amazing skills these athletes demonstrate.”

The National Disability Sports Alliance (NDSA) will host the CP-ISRA World Championships. The NDSA is the governing body responsible for the conduct and administration of approved sports for athletes with physical disabilities in the United States. In 2000, the NDSA’s National Sports Festival at Connecticut College hosted the U.S. Paralympic Team Track & Field trials for the 2000 Paralympic Games in Sydney, Australia.

“The 2005 CP-ISRA World Championships will be approximately the same size and scope as the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games,” said NDSA Executive Director Jerry McCole. “We know the Championships will mean so much to hundreds of athletes with disabilities and their families, and we wouldn’t be able to fulfill our vision for this event without the help of volunteers. Those who volunteer to help at the Championships are sure to find it a rewarding experience that I am sure they will cherish for the rest of their lives.”

For more information on volunteering for the 2005 CP-ISRA World Championships, please visit www.cpworldchampionships.org, or call (860) 447-2231. For general information about the event, visit the web site or call (860) 267-6757.

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