CEO Blog – January 2022

Welcome to 2022! I hope everyone stayed safe and managed some time on the water during the busy holiday period. 

The new year has continued to provide challenges as COVID cases have grown seemingly exponentially in many parts of the country. 

However, the lifting of some restrictions has brought new opportunities and we are excited to be hosting national events again. The 2022 PA Canoe Slalom Age Championships in early January was the first of what will hopefully be a series of successful events this year. Sincere thanks to Paddle Victoria and in particular the volunteers and members of their Slalom Committee, for all their efforts in putting on a great event in very challenging circumstances.

Indeed, as we move into the new year, a shout out to all those that have put a huge amount of time and effort in planning competitions over the past two years, often having to cancel activities at the last minute. For some, this hasn’t happened just once, but on multiple occasions. The stories of resilience of organisers, all trying to provide paddlers the chance to compete, have been truly inspiring. Thank you, and I hope the journey will be easier for you this year. 

The 2022 ICF Oceania Canoe Slalom Championships are this weekend at the Penrith Whitewater Stadium, and we are excited to announce that the semis and finals on Saturday and Sunday will be live streamed via the Paddle Australia Facebook page and YouTube channel.

With the calendar of national events almost finalised for 2022, we have released a set of general guidelines for event attendees. These can be found in this newsletter and on our website. The advice is relevant for events at all levels. 

We recognise that these measures are restrictive and for many, they may detract from their enjoyment of the events. However, as we all work through this pandemic together, we have a shared responsibility to keep each other safe. We all look forward to circumstances improving over the coming weeks and months. 

We are also enjoying seeing our communities #MyPaddleOz content, and welcome everyone to share your paddling videos, photos and stories across social media, tagging #MyPaddleOz and @paddle_australia.Keep them coming!

Yours in Paddling,

Phil Jones

Paddle Australia CEO

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