Last year, the general grant received by the Paralympic Committee was more than two million euros. The committee’s annual budget is 3,360,000 euros.
The Finnish Paralympic Committee will not receive a state grant from the Ministry of Education and Culture (OKM) for the year 2023. The Paralympic Committee’s state grant application was not submitted by the ministry’s deadline of December 1, 2022.
Secretary General of the Paralympic Committee Riikka Juntunen submitted the application a day late, on Friday, December 2nd. OKM will not take the application into account when processing sports organizations’ general grants.
– I made a mistake that no person leading an organization should make. Applying for state aid is one of the most important, if not the most important, tasks in my job. I can’t leave what’s done undone, no matter how much I want to, says Juntunen in the Paralympic Committee’s press release.
In 2022, the Paralympic Committee’s general grant was 2,062,000 euros. The annual budget of the Paralympic Committee as a whole is 3,360,000 euros.
– I apologize and I am sorry for this economic situation we have found ourselves in, says Juntunen.
The board of the Paralympic Committee ended up giving Juntuse a written warning. According to the release, the error has a very significant impact on the finances and operating conditions of the Paralympic Committee.
– Riikka Juntunen has worked flawlessly and with an excellent attitude for a long time, says the Chairman of the Board of the Paralympic Committee Sari Rautio.
Separate funding for those aiming for the Paralympics
According to him, the board of the Paralympic Committee will do everything to minimize damage and prevent similar mistakes in the future.
The board of the Paralympic Committee says that it has obliged Juntunen to initiate measures that will enable the organization to keep the damage as small as possible.
According to General Secretary Juntunen, the financial situation of the Paralympic Committee is reasonable based on last year, and there is no acute cash crisis. According to him, among other things, the organization’s own fundraising and other support and saving now play an important role.
– Some activities can be carried out through projects, but it only covers a small part of the whole, says Juntunen.
A team of 65 athletes is leaving Finland for the Special Olympics Summer World Games for the mentally disabled in Berlin in June. According to the release, the Finnish Paralympic Committee intends to ensure that the team’s competition project can be carried out with honor.
– The team has been selected and the first training camp has been held. Securing these games is of primary importance, says Juntunen.
According to the release, the situation has no effect on future athletes aiming for the Paralympics. Paralympic sports are part of the operations of the elite sports unit under the Olympic Committee, and thus the funding for the preparation of the Paralympic team comes through it.