Sarawak will set up an elite training centre for para athletes in Kuching as part of preparations for the Johor Para Sukma 2020.
Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah said the centre would provide long-term training for the state’s elite para athletes who had the potential to win medals at the next Sukma, and to represent Malaysia.
“For a start, the centre will take in 20 elite athletes. They will be selected based on merit.
“Four certified coaches will be appointed to conduct the training,” she said at the launch of the OKU Development Unit’s 2019 to 2020 programme here.
Her speech was read by Community Wellbeing Assistant Minister Datuk Francis Harden.
Fatimah noted that Sarawak emerged champions of the Para Sukma in Perak this year for the 13th consecutive time, winning 61 gold medals.
She said the OKU Development Unit under her ministry would carry out roadshows and talent identification statewide this year and next year to boost the involvement of persons with disabilities in sports and recreation.
“We will also scout for athletes among them,” she said.
In addition, she said training centres would be set up in each of the 12 administrative divisions in Sarawak to introduce sports and recreational activities to para athletes.
The centres will be located in towns with potential athletes identified in the roadshows and talent scouting programme.
The centres will provide long-term training for the state’s elite para athletes with the potential to win medals at the next Sukma, Fatimah said.