Acknowledgement of Country

Paralympics Australia acknowledges and pays respect to Elders past and present of the lands and waters on which we live, work, and engage in sports together. We are committed to caring for those lands and people across the nation.

We acknowledge the diversity, unique histories, cultures, knowledge, and current experiences of individuals and communities across Australia. We celebrate their contributions to the nation broadly, and specifically to community and sport.

Sport Has the Power to Change the World

Enduring Belief

Paralympic sport has the power and a platform to engage, inspire and challenge inequality. We aspire to amplify the influence sport has to create positive social change.

We believe that sport and society need to evolve to be more inclusive and collaborative; to live and reflect the Australian values of equality, mateship, and a fair go - for everyone.

Remarkable Paralympic moments inspire trust, pride, and respect; they bring us together, catalysing conversations and telling powerful stories from diverse role models.

Australian Steelers wheelchair rugby team
Pictured - Australian Steelers Wheelchair Rugby Team

Our time is now

We have an opportunity to use the power of sport to shift society and inspire a nation.

The Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games offer Australia the opportunity to ‘win big’ – to win on and off the field of play. Imagine what we can achieve if we plan for the most inclusive Games the world has seen. Imagine the impact we can have for athletes, volunteers, spectators and broadcast audiences, and the impact towards a future where everyone is valued.

Paralympic sport challenges mindsets and assumptions about what people with a disability can achieve. We have the platform to visibly model what systems and structures founded on the principles of universal, inclusive and accessible design can look like – and the positive social impact they can have for all Australians.

This Strategic Plan aims to ensure engagement, collaboration, alignment, accountability and role clarity across the sport ecosystem. To drive change and create a future where everyone is valued, we will bring together the sport ecosystem, to share their lived experiences, ideas and aspirations.

With a 10-year runway to Brisbane 2032, this is the moment to imagine what is possible, to imagine what it could look like to win big.

We see this as the catalytic opportunity to unite, inspire and motivate Australians for generations to come...where inclusion is a way of life.

Our time is now.

Para Swimmers Grant ‘Scooter’ Patterson and Ahmed Kelly
Pictured - Grant ‘Scooter’ Patterson and Ahmed Kelly

Our Purpose

We exist to lead Paralympic sport and create a more inclusive world.

Para tennis player Qian Yang
Pictured - Qian Yang



We set and chase bold and ambitious goals. We challenge the conventions and the perceptions that give rise to inequality and threaten to hold our movement back. We have the real conversations.


We believe that humans have limitless potential to grow, achieve and change. Casting aside misconceptions and inherent bias will unleash the limitless potential of people with a disability and the Paralympic movement.


We live our purpose and pursue our vision with passion and determination. We commit to continuously learning, growing and treating challenges as an opportunity to show our ingenuity and grit. We can do hard things and we have the tenacity to be the best at what we do. We don’t settle, we strive.


We are proud of who we are and what we do. We stand up and fight for our movement and what we believe in. We will rise up together, strong as a community and connected through our Mob identity. Purpose. Excellence. Community.

Dylan Alcott, wheelchair tennis player
Pictured - Dylan Alcott

Our Vision

To create the most successful era of Paralympic sport in Australia’s history.

Ambition 1

A world-leading and equitable sport system.

Ambition 2

Remarkable Paralympic performance.

Ambition 3

Our Team is a source of Aussie pride and a force towards creating a more inclusive society.

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I’m such a proud Paralympian. I’m proud of my disability. I love being disabled. It’s the best thing that ever happened to me and I didn’t always feel like that. The thing that saved my life was the Paralympic Games.

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Dylan Alcott (Tokyo 2020)

Our Strategy on a Page

How we will reimagine the future to become the most successful host nation by Brisbane 2032

Winning Aspiration

Our Enduring Belief

Sport has the power to change the world

Our Purpose

We exist to lead Paralympic sport and create a more inclusive world

Our Vision

To create the most successful era of Paralympic sport in Australia’s history

Our Ambition

Ambition #1

A world-leading and equitable sport system

Ambition #2

Remarkable Paralympic performance

Ambition #3

Our Team is a source of Aussie pride and a force towards creating a more inclusive society

Where to Focus

How to win

Grow our funding to achieve sustainable growth and new opportunities...

Grow and diversify funding via new revenue streams to attract more sustainable funding lead and accelerate Paralympic sport within the high-performance ecosystem...

Lead, develop and leverage partnerships to build capability and enhance Paralympic sport equity and success towards and beyond 2032

...that will develop and support athletes who win and thrive...

Partner to establish systems and pathways that support more thriving athletes, across more sport to deliver more medal performances that we become the most loved and values driven brand for sponsors and fans...

Create a rich tapestry of stories and narratives for our fans and deliver values led partnership opportunities

...ultimately, accelerating a societal shift towards inclusion and equity.

Deliver measurable performance results and impact on social change

Strategic Horizons

Our strategy is designed around six strategy horizons. Each horizon builds towards our vision, and will involve a review and recasting process.

Strategic horizons: Paris 2024, Milano Cortina 2026, Los Angeles 2028, Winter Games 2030, Brisbane 2032. Designed around six strategy horizons, our strategy builds towards our vision, and will involve a review and recasting process.

Our Ambition to Lead the World

Our ambition to lead the world. Where we were: Sydney 2000 – Led the medal table with 96 total medalists, 149 total medals, 286 athletes in the team. Where we are: Tokyo 2020 – 8th overall with 65 total medalists, 80 total medals, 174 athletes in the team. Our goal for 2032: Lead the medal table with a team of 300+ athletes, achieving 150 medals by 100 medalists.

Our role in the Australian sport system

Australia’s High Performance 2032+ Sport Strategy recognises that we have one of the greatest opportunities in Australian sporting history to unite and connect Australians like never before.

Paralympics Australia (PA) will play a leading role. We have a platform over the next decade to build and deliver an equitable, inclusive and sustainable sporting system. And it’s bigger than this.

We have a platform to lead positive social change throughout Australia via greater representation and participation opportunities for people with a disability. After nine months of consultation on what this change could look like with our System Partners across sport, three things became clear:

  1. There is a shared aspiration to unlock this once-in-a- generation opportunity
  2. There is an acknowledgment that it will take a collective and collaborative effort
  3. PA needs to lead the change for Para-sport
Spencer Cotie, boccia player and ramp assistant Zoe Dix
Pictured - Spencer Cotie and ramp assistant Zoe Dix

As custodians of the Paralympic Movement in Australia, we commit to being brave in our advocacy, our decision-making and in our planning. We commit to being tenacious in addressing inequity in service of the limitless potential within our Paralympic movement and the wider disability community.

We know that success on the podium not only drives national pride; it will also drive the necessary social change for a more inclusive Australia.

Our Commitments

Our Commitments To the Australian High Performance 2032+ Sport Strategy

Australia’s High Performance Sport System is a large and complex network of partners. Paralympics Australia, in its leadership role within the sport system, aims to promote and foster collaboration, alignment and accountability. Paralympics Australia was a key partner in the co-design of Australia’s High Performance 2032+ Sport Strategy and as a signatory, is fully committed to the execution of the plan.

Executive Summary


We win well to inspire Australians

We are united in our pursuit to build an inclusive and sustainable sporting system that is:

Performance driven

We win when it matters and we win well, because we know that performance and wellbeing go hand in hand

Athlete focused

We ensure the holistic development of the athlete and have clear pathways and transition periods

Exceptionally led

We lead with vision, integrity and accountability to create environments where people thrive

Purposefully collaborative

We work together towards shared outcomes and recognise and strengthen collaboration at all levels of the System

Success needs to continue to climb post 2032, and our time starts now.

Core Values
Excellence + Belonging + Courage + Connection

Our united pursuit will be delivered through four priority areas:

Performance delivery

Enabling our top athletes to perform when it matters.

Athlete performance pathways

Identifying, developing and supporting High Performance athletes of the future to progress towards the Podium and beyond.

World-leading knowledge + practice

Using world-leading innovation, knowledge and practice to ensure our athletes, coaches and performance support work as high functioning performance teams.

Outstanding people + organisations

Building highly capable organisations that attract, develop and retain diverse talent and maximise human potential across the High Performance workforce.

Enabled By:

World-class coaching

Clear roles + responsibilities

Inclusive design

Resources to achieve quality outcomes

Values + behaviours

Strategy monitoring + evaluation

Source - Australian Sports Commission

Our Commitment To Win Well


We commit to being an organisation that strives to win well, where how we win is just as important as when we win.

We commit to the holistic development of our athletes and our staff, recognising wellbeing as the foundation of sustainable success.

We commit to leading sport with integrity, where we are accountable for the culture we foster and the decisions we make.

We commit to acknowledging and learning from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and their cultures, and to walk together as we embed their knowledge and experience into our organisation and build a greater sense of belonging and connection to communities and country.

We commit to a culture of challenge and care so our athletes and staff can perform at their best and reach their potential.

We commit to creating safe and thriving environments for our people to fail so they can learn, grow and succeed.

We commit to being custodians of sport and building a legacy where sport is more inclusive and representative of the diversity of Australian communities.

We commit to Win Well.

Sam Tait, Paralympic alpine skier
Pictured - Sam Tait

Our Commitment to address inequity

We can create change, but we cannot deliver this transformation alone. It will take a collective commitment to evolve our sport system.

The Brisbane 2032 Paralympic Games is a catalyst and accelerator for inclusivity and changing perceptions for people with disability.

We know that of the 4.3 million People with a disability, only one in four participates in sport, while three in four want to participate. We also know that of the 2.1 million Australians of working age with disability, just 48% are employed, compared with 80% of people without disability. People with disability are also less likely to be employed on a full-time basis than people without disability.

When this level of disparity exists in society, it is reflected in sport too.

The Green and Gold Runway is the opportunity to realise Ambition #1: A world- leading and equitable sport system. Significant underinvestment in Paralympic sport is evident, compounding the additional barriers and costs faced by Para-athletes to participate or progress along sport pathways. Acknowledging the inequity, new and increased levels of investment are essential for an equitable sport system in Australia.

The Brisbane 2032 commitment is to improve access to sporting facilities for people with a disability. Paralympics Australia will advocate for purpose-built Para-sport facilities which are essential for elite high-performance success and community sport participation. Australian sporting infrastructure must be accessible and built with universal and inclusive design principles. This benefits athletes, fans, volunteers and employees, enriching both the Games experience and the enduring legacy for the community.

The Brisbane 2032 Paralympic Games present the opportunity to support the ideal of a truly barrier-free society. By 2032 we can create a more inclusive world for people with disability, through sport, education, employment and accessibility. Together we can create an equitable sport system, challenge stereotypes, transform attitudes and celebrate remarkable achievements.

Mary Friday, wheelchair basketball player
Pictured - Mary Friday

Australia’s Favourite Sports Team

The Australian Paralympic Team is Australia’s favourite sports team, achieving the highest ever score for emotional connection of any Australian sports team.

#1 for Respect, Trust & Pride

The Team is the most respected, and the most trusted by Australians to uphold the integrity of the sport, and it’s the team Australians are most proud of.

#2 for Enjoyment

The Team is the most entertaining to watch for Australians.

Source - True North Research, 2022

25% of People with a Disability

play a sport

75% of People with a Disability

want to play sport

Fund inequity

15% Overall High Performance funding provided to Paralympic programs in FY21 and FY22 , 85% Overall High Performance funding provided to Olympic programs in FY21 and FY22


Overall High Performance funding provided to Paralympic programs in FY21 and FY22


Overall High-Performance funding provided to Olympic sports in FY21 and FY22

Performance Pathways Funding



Paralympic Sports


Olympic Sports
9% Paralympic Sports , 91% Olympic Sports


48% of Working-age People

with a disability are employed

80% of Working-age people

without a disability are employed

Source - Australian Government, Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 5 July 2022

Our Core - Games Delivery

Paralympics Australia is world-leading in Games delivery, managing, preparing and coordinating the delivery of the Australian Paralympic Team to achieve success at the Paralympic Games.

However, under-investment and policy inequity within the HP system has resulted in the Australian Paralympic Team sliding down the medal table at each Games since London 2012.

With the right level of resourcing and an equitable HP system that values and develops Para-athletes, combined with our world-leading Games delivery, we can once again be world-leading in results.

Tokyo 2020 Australian Paralympic Team
Pictured - Tokyo 2020 Australian Paralympic Team

Pillars Fuelling the Imagination



We will develop financial sustainability strategies that will build and strengthen new revenue streams and deliver ROI in terms of performance results and social impact.



We will lead and develop collaborative partnerships to build capability and enhance equity of Paralympic Sport within the HP Ecosystem, towards a common vision for success.



We will partner to establish and deliver systems, pathways and practices that support more thriving athletes, across more sports to deliver more medal performances.



We will become the most loved national team and deliver strong values-led connection for fans and partners.

Social Impact

We will drive better inclusion and equality in society as a result of our culture, performance and advocacy.

Vanessa Low OAM, athlete competing in T42 sprint and long jump events
Pictured - Vanessa Low

Pillar 1: Sustainability

Objective: Create sustainable, equitable and values-aligned funding for Paralympics Australia and Paralympic sport programs

Pillar 2: Ecosystem

Objective: Achieve equity for Paralympic sport in the sport ecosystem through collaborative partnerships and strengthened capability

Ecosystem Leadership & Governance

High Performance Advisory & Partnerships

Brodie Smith and Meica Horsburgh, goalball athletes
Pictured - Brodie Smith and Meica Horsburgh © Getty Images

pillar 3: athletes

Objective: Enhance systems and pathways to support more thriving athletes to deliver more medal performances

Performance Pathway Development

Performance Insights and Innovation

pillar 4: fans

Objective: Connect with Fans and Partners, igniting a love for the Australian Team and inspiring social change

Business Transformation

In developing this Strategic Plan, Paralympics Australia has undertaken an independent and thorough capability assessment. This process identified a suite of capabilities and business enablers that are critical to the delivery of the Strategic Plan.

Our Enablers and Capabilities

  • Resourcing strategy mobilisation, monitoring and reporting systems
  • Modernisation of our business processes and systems
  • Aligning organisational culture and our People Plan with strategic initiatives
  • Evolution of our operating model design over the next 10 years
  • Modernising our technology, data, digital and cyber security infrastructure, systems and processes
  • Evolution of our corporate brand and strategic brand management
  • Building capability and capacity in our role as system leaders to support our partners in delivering Para-sport programs
Emily Petricola OAM, Paralympic cyclist
Pictured - Emily Petricola

Reconciliation Action Plan

Paralympics Australia is beginning our RAP journey in 2023 by committing to a ‘Reflect’ RAP.

Reconciliation Australia encourages organisations with a Reflect RAP to scope and develop relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders to find a strong vision for our RAP journey that will advance Reconciliation and provide equity to our First Nations community members.

By formalising our commitment to Reconciliation through our first RAP, PA pledges to acknowledge and advocate for the diverse cultures and histories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through sport.

The formation of our RAP is a significant milestone in PA’s journey and provides a structured framework for us to take direct action to support First Nations athletes, coaches and officials, and connect with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. As our RAP evolves, we will continue to bring Reconciliation to the forefront of Paralympics Australia’s work.

Paralympian Amanda Reid, a Gurinagi & Wamba Wamba woman
Pictured - Paralympian Amanda Reid, a Gurinagi & Wamba Wamba woman © Mathilde Dusol


Your Guide to the Language in This Plan

Acknowledgement of Country

Acknowledges the diversity, unique histories, cultures, knowledge and current experiences of individuals and communities across Australia. It celebrates their contributions to the nation broadly, and specifically to community and sport.

Athlete Development

Optimising the development of athletes, inclusive of the training, competition, and recovery phases depending on the athlete’s stage in their athletic development.

Athlete Wellbeing and Education (AWE)

A proactive approach to supporting athletes in building resilience, responsibility, purpose to thrive on and off the field and support their transition out of sport.

Australian Institute of Sport (AIS)

The organisation that leads and enables a united and collaborative high performance sport system that supports Australian athletes to achieve international podium success.

Australian Olympic Committee (AOC)

A non-government, not-for-profit organisation, committed to the development of youth and sport. With responsibility to select, send and fund Australian Teams to the Olympic Games.

Australian Sports Commission (ASC)

An Australian Government agency responsible for supporting and investing in sport at all levels.

Australia’s High Performance 2032+ Sport Strategy

Represents all peak bodies from across Australia’s Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth Games sports united for a national high performance sport strategy. It includes Federal, State and Territory Institutes and Academies of Sport, peak Games bodies the Australian Olympic Committee, Paralympics Australia and Commonwealth Games Australia and National Sporting Organisations.

Commonwealth Games Australia (CGA)

A member-based organisation (members are the National Sporting Organisations (NSO’s) representing the sports participating in Commonwealth Games), which exists to administer, control, and coordinate the participation of program sports and their respective athletes and officials in the Commonwealth Games.

Daily Training Environment (DTE)

Refers to the everyday workout or training environment of athletes in which every workout or training session has a performance focus.

High Performance (HP)

Refers to the system which identifies, nurtures and supports athlete’s development to maximise their potential. This pathway commences with talent identification, development of the athlete’s potential and progression through categorisation levels.

International Paralympic Committee (IPC)

The international, non-profit organisation and the global governing body for the Paralympic Movement. The IPC organises the Paralympic Games and functions as the international federation for six sports.

National Athlete Categorisation Framework (NACF)

The framework that Identifies the athletes with the greatest potential to contribute to Australia consistently winning medals at major international events. To inform the prioritisation of support to athletes and to track their performance over time.

National Institute Network (NIN)

The Australian Institute of Sport and eight State/Territory Institutes and Academies of Sport, representing Federal, State and Territory Governments.

National Paralympic Committee (NPC)

A National Paralympic Committee (NPC) is a national constituent of the worldwide Paralympic movement. Subject to the controls of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), NPCs are responsible for organising participation in the Paralympic Games.

National Sporting Organisations (NSO)

Nationally recognised organisations for Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth Games sports and through them, their relevant State Sporting Organisations.

National Sporting Organisations for People with a Disability (NSOD)

The organisations that provide advice, support and opportunities for people living with a disability using sport as the medium.

National Sports Tribunal (NST)

Hears and resolves national-level sporting disputes in Australia.

Olympic Games

The leading international sporting event featuring summer and winter sports competitions in which thousands of athletes from around the world participate in a variety of competitions.

Paralympic Games

The major international sports competition for athletes with disabilities. The Paralympics are split into Winter Games and Summer Games, which alternately occur every two years.

Paralympics Australia (PA)

Helps Australians with disabilities participate in sport and compete at the Paralympic Games through partnerships with governments, business, sporting bodies and the community. Responsible for preparing the Australian Paralympic Summer and Winter Teams for the Paralympic Games.

People with Disability (PWD)

Language has an impact on the way people with disability feel and are perceived in society. It is important there is awareness of the meaning behind the words that are used when talking to, referring to, or collaborating with people with disability. People with disability are people first, who have families, who work, and who participate in sport and our communities. People with disability want their lives to be respected and affirmed. In addition, many people with disability are proud of being disabled, and want that identity respected.

Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP)

Provides the structured framework to take direct action to support First Nations athletes, coaches, and officials, and connect with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. As our RAP evolves, PA will continue to bring Reconciliation to the forefront of its work.

Sport Integrity Australia (SIA)

Acts to keep Australian sport safe and fair, at all levels, for all participants. Established to draw together the country’s existing sport integrity capabilities, knowledge and expertise, and to coordinate and develop new threat responses, including prevention, detection, investigation, and enforcement programs.

State Institutes of Sport/State Academies of Sport (SIS/SAS)

The institutes and academies of sport that identify, develop, and support athletes with the potential to perform at the highest national and international levels of sport. The institutes and academies work with sporting partners to conduct world-class, intensive coaching and training programs and individual scholarship programs.

Talent Identification (TID)

Describes the process of an athlete moving into, and progressing up, the high performance pathway to an elite or high performance status.

Universal Design/ Inclusive Design

The design of buildings, products, or environments to make them accessible to all people, regardless of age, disability, or other factors. Inclusive design is human-centered design. It considers the full range of human diversity, including ability, language, culture, gender, age, and other forms of human difference, as part of the design process.

About Paralympics Australia

Australia has participated at every Paralympic Games since the first Games in 1960. The Australian Paralympic Federation was officially established in 1990, changing its name to the Australian Paralympic Committee in 1998 and then again in 2018 to Paralympics Australia. Paralympics Australia is a member and National Paralympic Committee of the International Paralympic Committee.

As a national sports organisation and charity, Paralympics Australia is governed by a board consisting of elected and appointed Directors.

In addition to selecting and managing the Australian Paralympic Teams for Summer and Winter Paralympic Games, Paralympics Australia also manages the high performance programs for Powerlifting and Wheelchair Rugby.

Athlete Shae Graham featured during a wheelchair rugby game
Pictured - Shae Graham

Paralympics Australia Voting Members

  • Archery Australia
  • Athletics Australia
  • AusCycling
  • Australian Sailing
  • Australian Taekwondo
  • Badminton Australia
  • Basketball Australia
  • Blind Sports Australia
  • Boccia Australia
  • Disabled Wintersport Australia
  • Disability Sport Australia
  • Equestrian Australia
  • Football Australia
  • Ice Hockey Australia
  • Paddle Australia
  • Rowing Australia
  • Shooting Australia
  • Sport Inclusion Australia
  • Snow Australia
  • Swimming Australia
  • Table Tennis Australia
  • Tennis Australia
  • Triathlon Australia


Paralympics Australia commenced the strategic planning process in April 2022 and over the course of nine months, hosted multiple Roundtables with athletes, NSOs, SIS/SAS, Government agencies and our corporate partners. It has been a very consultative and collaborative process.

We would like to sincerely thank everyone who has contributed their knowledge, experience, ideas, feedback and importantly engaged in the constructive debate to test our thinking. Your input has been so valuable. Together we have created a vision for the future and a plan to get there summarised in these pages.

Curtis Wain McGrath OAM, paracanoeist
Pictured - Curtis McGrath


current and former Para High Performance Athletes (Paralympic Alumni)


CEOs and Para High Performance staff from National Sporting Organisations (NSO)


CEOs and staff from National Sporting Organisations for People with a Disability (NSOD)


representatives of PA commercial and industry partners


leaders from within the National Institute Network (AIS and State Institutes and Academies)


independent advisories


university and research stakeholders


Paralympics Australia Board and staff


stakeholders contributed across our series of Roundtables and consultation calls

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