Trainers Paralímpicos (Paralympic Trainers) – Life Trainers


Target Group All groups of disabilities, all ages
The initiative “Trainers Paralímpicos” (Paralympic Trainers) raised within the framework of an agreement signed by the ONCE Foundation (as promoter), the Spanish Paralympic Committee and the High Council for Sport, right after the London 2012 Paralympic Games, with the aim of fostering the labour inclusion of Paralympic athletes after they retire from elite competitive sport, providing them with an employment option through individual and collective entrepreneurship.

Former professional athletes are usually a group with higher difficulty to find a job, due to different reasons:
-        They have been competing as a full-time job, and when they retire they are older than other job seekers and have less or no labour experience at all.
-        Although some of them have an education (even University education), they have never or almost never practised their profession.

However, their communication skills and their inspiring life paths make them a perfect vehicle to transmit value added concepts to organizations.

They are great athletes, Paralympic medallists, world champions with outstanding sports careers, but, above all, they are examples of self-improvement. They are a clear proof that there is no adversity in life that could hinder a successful career.

All the values and qualities a Paralympic athlete embodies may be applied to working groups, labour environments and companies, so why not transferring their experience, their tools and expertise to society, to professionals and companies?

After training them and providing them with the appropriate skills to athletes to work as speakers and event facilitators, a website was developed for the project (, which shows the profiles of all the athletes involved and the activities they are participating in.

The final goal is for them to become entrepreneurs.

Programme development path:

-        2012: Design of the programme for former athletes within the framework of an agreement signed by the ONCE Foundation (as promoter), the Spanish Paralympic Committee and the High Council for Sport
-        2013:
o  Definition of group and individual plans/programmes
o  Selection of athletes basing on their capabilities and potential
o  Training sessions to improve their communication skills
-        2014:
o  Specialisation and continuous improvement of their skills through training and practical experience
-        2015:
o  Presentation and promotion of the programme to companies, associations, organizations, public administrations...
-        Now:
o  Spreading the programme, growing and improving according to experience. Training continues for continuous improvement.
o  Specific entrepreneurship training provided to 2 of the participants for them to be able to support the project as entrepreneurs.

-        Participation in 48 events/conferences, such as:
o   30th edition of the BBVA Route (2015) where they led a awareness raising activity on disability and values of sport for 250 youngsters;
o   Employment Fair of the Region of Madrid,
o   Storytelling activities at the 39th Children and Youth Books Fair
o   Events and Conference for Universities
o   Total number of attendants to events, conferences and activities: 4380
-        Numerous interviews and media presence
-        946 followers in Twitter
-        1210 followers in Facebook 
Staff and Resources
Spanish Paralympic Committee, Spanish High Council for Sport
Project Director + 3 staff members (part-time) and 1 external expert/coach.
ONCE Foundation and income from the project (participation in events) 

Contact /more information Name: Sabina Lobato
Email address: