BP is 'Fueling the Future' of Paralympic hopefuls with local fundraising efforts

Jan. 16, 2013, 9 a.m. (ET)

CHICAGO BP Products North America Inc., the exclusive energy partner of Team USA through 2016, and New York and New Jersey BP station owners have launched a fundraising campaign in support of four local Paralympic Sport Clubs by selling window clings for $1 at participating BP stations now through February 28, 2013. The proceeds will help fund new equipment, participant outreach, training for coaches and competitive athlete scholarships, to further the Paralympic Sport Clubs’ mission of providing competitive and recreational sports opportunities for individuals with physical and visual disabilities. 

BP Branded Marketers donated more than $300,000 in 2012 to 20 Paralympic Sport Clubs in 19 areas around the country. More than 80 percent of those donations have come from New York and New Jersey BP Branded Marketers who presented $240,000 of the donated funds to four local Paralympic Sport Clubs in the New York and New Jersey area.

Increasing Paralympic sport programs nationally is an important community need.  There are currently more than 21 million Americans with physical and visual disabilities. While 80 percent of the U.S. Olympic Committee’s network of Paralympic Sport Clubs reported an increase in program recruitment and participation during the past year, the majority of them face funding challenges. Of the 186 Paralympic Sport Clubs in the U.S., 60 percent of them operate on a total budget of less than $150,000.

“Participation in Paralympic sport has a profound positive impact on the lives of individuals with physical and visual disabilities,” said Charlie Huebner, U.S. Olympic Committee Chief of Paralympics.  “This grassroots support from BP, its Branded Marketers and customers is not only going to help us grow Paralympic sport, it will also help improve the lives of thousands of individuals.” 

While the focus of the Paralympic Sport Clubs is on providing opportunities to be physically fit and active, individuals who have the interest and skills to pursue sport at a higher competitive level are also supported by the Paralympic Sport Clubs.

“Without the North Jersey Navigators Paralympic Sport Club, I wouldn't be where I am today.  The Paralympic Sport Club has not only given me the opportunity to compete at an elite level, but has provided me with great support and a sense of community,” said Ray Martin, a four-time gold medalist in track and field at the London 2012 Paralympic Games. “Paralympic Sport Club members and aspiring athletes alike are grateful to sponsors like BP who are dedicated to the cause and helping to elevate the Paralympic movement.”

All proceeds from the window clings being sold at participating BP stations will go to four local Paralympic Sport Clubs at the following locations:

  • Children’s Lightning Wheels (Mountainside, N.J.): offers sports for athletes ages 5-22 including track and field, swimming, archery, table tennis and powerlifting; hosts an annual swim meet  and annual  track and field meet and participates in regional  and national sporting competitions.
  • North Jersey Navigators (Bayonne, N.J.) offers adaptive, competitive and fun-filled sports programs to help children and youth with disabilities increase their mobility skills, social skills, self-esteem, and activity levels.  The team provides opportunities to participate and excel in several adaptive sports including track & field, swimming, archery, powerlifting, paratriathlon, table tennis and road racing.  
  • Row New York: empowers young people from New York City’s under-resourced communities to build strength, gain confidence, and pursue excellence in all facets of their lives via year-round adaptive rowing programs for both youth and adults.
  • City of New York Parks & Recreation: offers a variety of adaptive sports for youth and adults including track and field, aquatics, softball, basketball, sitting volleyball, and sled hockey.

To learn more about Paralympic Sport Clubs visit http://findaclub.usparalympics.org/.

About BP

BP’s commitment to U.S. energy security is reflected in our gasoline marketing. We market more than 15 billion gallons of gasoline every year to U.S. consumers through more than 11,000 BP and ARCO branded retail outlets. BP sells enough gas annually to fuel 27 million passenger vehicles year-round or every car in the state of California.

BP has invested more in the United States over the last five years than any other oil and gas company. With more than $52 billion in capital spending between 2007 and 2011, BP invests more in the U.S. than in any other country. The company is the nation’s second largest producer of oil and gas, a major oil refiner and a leader in alternative energy sources including wind power and biofuels. BP provides enough energy each year to light the entire country. With 23,000 U.S. employees, BP supports nearly a quarter of a million domestic jobs through its business activities. For more information, view our BP in America animation video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I6n9cZ1xxQw or visit www.bp.com. 


Media Contacts:

BP Products North America: Scott Dean, 630/821-3212, scott.dean@bp.com

GolinHarris: Javier Macias, 312/729-4387, jmacias@golinharris.com

U.S. Olympic Committee: Jeannine Hansen, 719/866-2115, jeannine.hansen@usoc.org