Para Sports

Para Sports

Want to take the next step in your sporting career?

The IAS is committed to providing equal opportunity for Para Athletes to achieve sporting excellence through the facilitation of appropriate sports development programs that support and enhance the athlete’s potential and sporting opportunities. Scholarships are offered for a 12-month period commencing in October 2023 and concluding September 2024.

The purpose of the Para-sports program is to identify and connect pre-categorised Para-athletes (with potential to progress to Emerging/Developing Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) Categorisation within 2 years) to athlete servicing and support provided through the Illawarra Academy of Sport, with the goal of supporting athletes to be National Institute Network (NIN) ready by the time they achieve categorisation.

Register your interest for 2024/25

The IAS Para Sports Program (formerly Athlete with a Disability) is designed to support the developmental needs of the regions talented Para Athletes by providing industry leading high-performance sport development programs by offering scholarships to access strength & conditioning support, education, and additional targeted development opportunities.

The program is supported and endorsed by Paralympics Australia and will aim to complement and elevate an athlete’s current training program.

2023/24 Staff

Kurt Freeme, Head Coach

2023/24 Squad

Eddie Clare

Oskar Driscoll

Jarred Dyer

Jack Gibson 

Athlete Profiles

Scholarship Components


Skill Development


Strength & Conditioning

Media Skills

Education Sessions


2023-24 Scholarship

Athlete Eligibility

To be eligible for an IAS Para Sports Scholarship, athletes must:

  • Reside in one of the five local councils within the IAS catchment area. These include Wollongong, Shellharbour, Kiama, Shoalhaven and Wingecarribee
  • Have an eligible physical, vision, and/or intellectual impairment for Para-sport, based on previous national or provisional classification:
  • Be aged between 13 – 18 years in 2024 (born 2006-2011). Special consideration may be given to some athletes falling outside of this age limit due to the nature of para-sport. This remains subject to the approval of IAS board in consultation with Paralympics Australia.
  • Be representing at a state or national level within their Para-sport or show appropriate talent potential as determined by the National Sporting Organisation (NSO) for their sport and Paralympics Australia.
  • Be representing one (or more) of the 28 Para-sports and events competed at the Paralympic Games.
Indigenous Sports Program

Athletes identifying as Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander may be eligible to participate in the Indigenous Talent Program (ITP). The ITP provides an opportunity for the IAS to provide mentorship and a dedicated level of focus upon the outcomes and support for Indigenous athletes.


2023-24 Para Sports

Selection Criteria

Satisfy the eligibility criteria and demonstrate the following qualities;

  • – Be representing at a state or national level and meet minimum-level performance outcomes within their Para-sport or show appropriate talent potential as determined by their sport and Paralympics Australia.
  • Affiliation to a sporting association associated with chosen sport
  • Evidence of classification or ability/capacity to gain/ seek a confirmation of disability whether it is physical or intellectual
  • Capacity to represent at State and National level within 12 months
  • Display an ability to apply coaching and technical instruction
  • Display attitude, commitment and dedication to improving performance

2023-24 Para Sports

Selection Process

Applications Close: 9am 11 September 2023

Athlete Interviews: Mid-late September 2023

Athletes will be selected for the IAS Para Sports program by Paralympics Australian and Illawarra Academy of Sport. Athletes may be offered a development scholarship.


    2023-24 Scholarship


    IAS athletes are required to purchase the IAS squad uniform, they also are required to contribute to additional components of the programs such as camps.

    2022/23 Coach

    Expression of Interest