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Group of Paralympic athletes at Pyeong Chang 2018 opening ceremony waving Canadian flag

Fostering the Canadian Paralympic Community's Digital Expansion with Drupal DXP & Portage CyberTech

The Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC) has been a beacon for Paralympic sports in Canada since 1968. Representing athletes across 27 member organizations, it reputation stands tall within the global Paralympic sports landscape.

Emphasizing inclusion, diversity, and representation, an astounding 4.25 billion viewers tuned in for the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games, reinforcing its worldwide appeal.

But the Paralympic movement transcends sportsmanship. François Robert, Chief Commercial Officer, articulates this vision, "Our goal is to promote sports and ensure every Canadian, regardless of their ability, understands that sport offers camaraderie, inclusivity, and community." 

When speaking to both Robert and Erin Blaskie, Director of Marketing and Communications, their vision becomes clear. They perceive the digital realm as integral to the movement's growth, believing it to be a critical platform for amplifying the CPC's goals and supporting the broader social cause.

Since the Vancouver Paralympic Games, the Committee has continued to fortify its position, nurturing pivotal connections with major sponsors like Pfizer Canada, Petro-Canada, Canadian Tire, and Lululemon. The onus now, as Robert emphasizes, is on "building awareness and properly communicating with all stakeholders."

The CPC initially approached a partnership with Portage CyberTech seeking to update their digital toolkit. Grappling with an outdated website and limited digital tools, their audiences’ specific web accessibility needs were not being met, negatively impacting user engagement and the overall digital experience. The CPC now boats a responsive website and an enhanced digital reputation, with multilingual digital assets accessible to a wider audience, and a huge surge in overall website traffic.

Central to the next stage in their digital growth strategy is harnessing the power of storytelling via digital channels. With the prevalence of short-form videos on platforms like TikTok, it's crucial to meet audiences where they are.

Robert asserts that, "Storytelling is critical for promoting inclusivity and diversity in sports and society at large." This sentiment is echoed by Blaskie, who stresses the importance of connecting with their partners and the broader public through athletes' narratives.

To support this ambition, a partnership with CBC/Radio-Canada brings Paralympic sports to television audiences. This widespread content dissemination benefits both the sports and the sponsors and plays a vital role in challenging biases against disabled individuals.

At the heart of this digital push is the Drupal DXP platform by Portage CyberTech, a comprehensive and scalable content management system with a focus on enhanced support and seamless and secure integrations. Recognizing the need for a robust digital tool, Portage CyberTech offered a solution that was both intuitive and powerful.

The CPC praises their collaboration, stating, "Portage CyberTech's personal, responsive approach sets them apart. They partner with us, understanding our mission and contributing to our goals."

Beyond the Drupal DXP platform's benefits, such as its intuitive interface and ease of integration with other tools, Portage CyberTech also shines in its commitment to accessibility. Their adherence to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) ensures that the platform aligns with the CPC's dedication to inclusivity.

Looking forward, Robert celebrates the global growth of Paralympic sports in parallel to the CPC’s own digital transformation journey and its increased ability to communicate effectively with a wider audience.

As the movement continues to gain momentum, so will the expectations of fans, athletes, and partners. Robert and the CPC are now well-equipped and ready to adapt to these evolving digital demands in order to best serve the evolving needs of their community, members, and sponsors.


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