TAVARES, Fla. – The Florida Region of USA Volleyball (USAV) announced a $100,000 private donation from the Norelli Family Foundation (NFF) to support USAV Beach ParaVolley (BPV) programming at Hickory Point Beach in Tavares, FL for the 2021‐2024 quad.
Additionally, Hickory Point Beach (HPB) will become a national training site for the BPV program as well.
Beach ParaVolley is an emerging sport as recognized by World ParaVolley (WPV). WPV is recognized by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) as the sole international federation responsible for all forms of volleyball for persons with a physical impairment. BPV consists of three member teams and works within the Paralympic classification system.
In 2019, USA Volleyball announced it would become the national federation for the sport of BPV in the country. Later in 2019, the inaugural USA BPV teams medaled at the WPV World Championships event in Pingtan, China. The USA women earned silver and the USA men earned golden in their first international competition and currently hold the second and first BPV world ranking, respectively.
USA Volleyball president and CEO Jamie Davis stated, “The growth of Beach ParaVolley is a huge priority for USAV as this new discipline expands globally,” said USAV president and CEO Jamie Davis. “Our goal is to provide state-of-the-art facilities where our athletes can train in their pursuit for gold. We are grateful to the Florida Region and the Norelli Family Foundation for their generous support in helping our athletes achieve their dreams.”
NFF has supported the Florida Region of USAV scholarship program since 2015 and provides four-year scholarships and matching dollars for numerous private scholarships for high school seniors each year.
Since coming alongside the Florida Region, the NFF has generously provided almost $300,000 in scholarship funds.
“We are honored to support this worthy cause and provide some seed funding for the USAV BPV program. In November of 2020, I had the privilege of watching the [BPV] athletes train and compete and was impressed with their determination and dedication to the sport,” said NFF president Joe Norelli. “With a first‐class venue like HPB and some additional BPV program funding, I look forward to seeing Team USA become a world‐leader in this sport.”
Through a public‐private partnership with Lake County, FL, the Florida Region of USAV opened the 21‐court HPB sand volleyball complex in 2014. In 2019 the 4,000-square-foot athletic center building was opened with many amenities to improve the experience for athletes and fans that visit the complex. Since opening the venue, athletes and fans from 14 countries, 25 states in the US and more than 90 cities across Florida have journeyed to HPB.