Overcoming Stigma through
Paralympic Sport

Professor Jo Tacchi, Dr Jessica Noske-Turner, Dr Holly Collison, Boeun Bethany Hong (Loughborough London: Institutes of Media and Creative Industries, Sports Business, and Design Innovation), Dr Emma Pullen (Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences), and Nik Diaper (Loughborough’s Head of Para Sport)

As part of the London 2012 Paralympic Legacy, Loughborough University is a founding member of the Global Disability Innovation Hub which is tackling global challenges around disability.

Loughborough London is leading a GDI Hub four-year project Overcoming Stigma through Paralympic Sport in collaboration with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) to help improve attitudes towards disability and increase access to and uptake of assistive technologies in Africa.

Focusing activities in Malawi, Ghana and Zambia, the project has three strands: broadcasting, Para athlete development, and education. It will create broadcast highlights of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games and broadcast them, for the first time, in African countries. The broadcast content will be grounded by a series of activities to raise awareness and increase Para Sport participation.

Broadcast and local communication and education research is being undertaken in collaboration with the University of Malawi and local community based organisations. Our research into Para-athlete development and Para Sport participation is in collaboration with the National Paralympic Committees in the three countries.

Dissemination of the findings will be via a series of publications, case studies, a communication for social change toolkit, and a Para athlete development guide. 

Image courtesy of
Amos Gumulira - Agitos Foundation


  • International Paralympic Committee (Germany)
  • National Paralympic Committees (Ghana, Malawi and Zambia)
  • NGOs and local community groups, including The Story Workshop Educational Trust and the Creative Centre for Community Mobilization (CRECCOM, Malawi)
  • The University of Malawi
  • The Wallace Group

This project is part of a four-year £19.8M GDI Hub global programme funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID): AT2030 – Life Changing Assistive Technology for All. Its aim is to reach nine million people directly and six million, indirectly; testing new approaches and backing ‘what works’ to get assistive technology to those who need it.