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Ghana’s Disability Sports: Thriving Despite Challenges

Ghana, a nation known for its vibrant culture and athletic prowess, is also making strides in the world of disability sports. Despite facing numerous challenges, Ghanaian para-athletes are pushing boundaries and achieving remarkable feats on the international stage.

The sporting landscape for persons with disabilities in Ghana is rich and varied. From track and field events like para-athletics to wheelchair basketball and sitting volleyball, there’s a sport for almost every disability. The Association of Sports for the Disabled (ASFOD) oversees and regulates over 25 para-sports disciplines, showcasing the depth and potential of this sector.

Speaking to Adoa TV Shaaban Mohammed, President Of ASFOD, stated that ASFOD was mainly created to support people with disability. He also added that in 2030, there would be an Olympic Games which would be organized so that people with disabilities would compete with the Senior National Team.

The Ghanaian para-athletes have rewritten the narrative of disability sports in the country. The recent hosting of the first-ever African Para Games in 2023 was a testament to their dedication and the growing recognition of their abilities. Athletes like Para powerlifter Christian Amoako and sprinter Samuel Akoh have brought home medals from international competitions, inspiring countless others.

Despite the progress, significant challenges remain. Inadequate infrastructure, limited funding, and societal stigma are just some of the hurdles these athletes face. ASFOD constantly appeals for resources to cater to the needs of the various para-sports disciplines.

However, there’s a glimmer of hope. The recent announcement of the first national para-sports festival scheduled for December 2023 is a significant step towards raising awareness and providing a platform for athletes to showcase their talent.

The Way forward for Ghanaian disability sports.

The future of disability sports in Ghana is bright, but continued support and investment are crucial. Here are some key areas for improvement:

Increased funding: Government and private sector support is essential for providing proper training facilities, equipment, and competition opportunities for para-athletes.

Improved infrastructure: Accessible training centres and competition venues are necessary for inclusivity and optimal performance.
Public awareness: Raising awareness about disability sports and changing societal perceptions can break down barriers and foster greater support.
By addressing these challenges and capitalizing on the existing momentum, Ghana can further empower its para-athletes and become a leading force in disability sports on the continent and beyond.

Ghana’s disability sports scene is a testament to the human spirit of resilience and determination. By supporting and celebrating these athletes, we can create a more inclusive and equitable society where everyone has the opportunity to reach their full potential, regardless of ability.

Let’s champion the cause of disability sports in Ghana and cheer on these remarkable athletes as they continue to break barriers and achieve greatness.

Credit : Joseph Kobina Agyei

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