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Paralympian Profile

Jai Waite #156

Jai Waite, New Zealand Paralympian

19 years ago, Jai Waite dove into a wave in Greece and hit a sandbar, becoming paralysed from the chest down with limited function in his arms and hands. But as robust boys from Taranaki do, Waite got on with life and over the next four years he threw himself into sport – Wheelchair rugby – and was selected to be part of the Wheel Blacks, New Zealand’s Wheelchair rugby team to compete at the Athens 2004 Paralympic Games. The team became Paralympic Champions, winning gold after an epic final game against Canada. Four years later, Jai also represented his country in Beijing 2008 where the Wheel Blacks finished fifth.

Recipient of a Prime Ministers Scholarship after Athens, Waite chose to study a part-time postgraduate course in digital media to add to his undergraduate degree in social sciences. Now he is a senior documentary editor at Attitude Pictures, the internationally recognised producer of documentaries showcasing people living with disabilities. He has won several prestigious awards for his documentaries.

Jai officially received his ‘numbered’ Paralympic pin as part of The Celebration Project in New Plymouth in September 2019.

Paralympic Results
Paralympic GamesResult
Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games
  • -

Athens 2004 Paralympic Games
  • Gold


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