FIJI NEWS

Delana shares golden experience with students

By TALEBULA KATE Australian – Pacific Technical College (APTC) students learning how to assist people with disability were ‘over the moon’ on Friday as Fiji’s golden hero, Iliesa Delana paid
07 Oct 2012 08:39

By TALEBULA KATE

Australian – Pacific Technical College (APTC) students learning how to assist people with disability were ‘over the moon’ on Friday as Fiji’s golden hero, Iliesa Delana paid a visit at their training centre at Gorrie Street, Suva.
He and his coach Fred Fatiaki received a hero’s welcome from the students and the management of APTC.
Mr Delana, a gold medal Paralympian fresh from his triumph in London, was there to share his experiences with disability studies students.
Funded by the Australian Government, the APTC has offered a Disability Studies programme at its Suva centre since January 2012 to meet the need for qualified personnel in this field.
In welcoming the duo the APTC director of trade and technology, James Knynenburg acknowledged the achievement Mr Delana and his coach attained at the London Paralympics 2012.
“You have truly represented the aspirations of all of us here today,” Mr Knynenburg said.
Mr Delana then spoke about his Paralympics experience in London and about living with and overcoming disability.
The students also heard that his heroic exploits were not confined to the sports field alone.
He recounted how he had to battle hard, ever since he lost a leg in a bus accident when he was three and has shown that he can still live a full and productive life despite the disability.
In showing their appreciation, the students acknowledged that Mr Delana’s achievement had shown that people with disabilities needed to be recognised and acknowledged.
Mr. Delana is the first Fijian and Pacific Islander ever to win a gold medal at the Paralympics Games. His 1.74m in the high jump, that broke the Oceania record, was described by the President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau as inspirational.
He then spent some time with the students thanking them for helping disabled people make the most of their lives.




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