Europ Assistance

Look up, see beyond

Europ Assistance is proud to be the official partner of 13 elite para-athletes from 9 countries. These champions, each excelling in their sport and category, form a unique international team that we support as a Group.

We are proud to support a team of 13 inspiring and high-performing international para-athletes: day to day and for the long term. Our aim is to fight against stereotypes and biases about disability by promoting and normalizing inclusion within our company and throughout society. These champions exemplify resilience, determination and the ability to overcome obstacles.

We invite our 12000 employees around the world to “Look up and see beyond”, to celebrate the performance and achievements of these athletes, support them daily in their ambitions, and take pride.


Lindy Ave


As a para-athlete, my big goal is to take part in the Paris Paralympic Games, and I’m currently training very hard. The support provided by Europ Assistance is a great opportunity for my sporting career. Thanks to this, I can realize my dream of achieving high-level performances in athletics with greater peace of mind“.

Lindy Ave, a 26-year-old para-athlete from Neubrandenburg, Germany. She competes in the sprint and long jump. Lindy is Germany’s second female paralytic athlete of the year. 

Her journey began at the 2016 Paralympics, where she competed in the 4x100m relay, 100m and long jump. Lindy achieved international success at the 2021 Paralympics, winning gold in the 400m and bronze in the 100m. That same year, she also placed fifth at the Athens Paralympic Games and fifth in the 100m at the European Championships.

Lindy is preparing for the Paris Paralympic Games in 2024, for which she has already been qualified. She also hopes to take part in the Los Angeles Paralympic Games in 2028. Known for her resilience and determination, Lindy reconciles her sporting career with her role as a mother.

Alexis Bellanger


“I believe that sports convey many beautiful values, and even with a disability, we can practice any sport. I am a proof of this, just like tens of thousands of other athletes. A disability is not an obstacle to achieving great things in sports, even very great things. If I had to describe Europ Assistance in one word, it would be “sharing”. Sharing is what struck me the most when I met the team members”.

Alexis Bellanger is an elite French athlete from Ploërmel (Morbihan) and is just 18 years old. This rising swimming star has already achieved significant results. In 2022, he placed 7th overall in the French and European championships.

In 2023, Alexis came third in the 400 m freestyle and second in the 4×100 m mixed relay at the World Cup in Italy. He won bronze medals in the 400 m freestyle and 100 m backstroke, as well as gold in the mixed 4×100 m medley relay.

Currently, Alexis is focusing on his next international competitions and already has his sights set on the Los Angeles 2028 Paralympic Games. He’s determined to win and reach the top.

Keen to share his resilience and enthusiasm for the joys of life, and to demonstrate everyone’s ability to overcome challenges, Alexis co-wrote an autobiography with his mother in 2020 entitled “Back to Life”, detailing his story and his struggles to never give up.

Florian Brungraber


“My next goal is the Paris Paralympics! I am sure I will be on the starting line. It is also my biggest motivation, which makes the hard training easier. I am proud to be supported by Europ Assistance during this sporting season and for this important goal”.

Florian Brungraber, a 40-year-old para-triathlete from Austria. He competes in paratriathlon in a wheelchair, representing sport clubs Tripower Wimberger Freistadt and RSC Heindl OÖ. 

Florian won three bronze medals at the European Championships in Triathlon in 2019, 2022, and 2023. Additionally, he earned two bronze and one silver medal at the World Championships in Triathlon in 2021, 2022, and 2023. His performance at the 2020 Paralympics was outstanding: he was awarded by a silver medal in triathlon.

Balancing his athletic career, Florian works as a project manager for hydropower plants. Florian aims to participate in the Paris Paralympic Games in 2024, with his qualification pending.

In addition to his athletic achievements, Florian Brungraber is also active as a motivational speaker and ambassador for Wings for Life. He uses his platform to raise awareness about the challenges and opportunities for people with disabilities and to inspire others to pursue their dreams. His story serves as an example to many of how one can be successful despite severe setbacks in life.

Wim De Paepe


“I grew up in a close-knit family and in an environment where you are taught to work hard, you can always go beyond your limits. This is a value that has influenced my life and my sport. When I do something, I give it my all”.

Wim De Paepe is a 39-year-old para-triathlete from Belgium. He competes in the PTS2 category and represents the Triathlon Tenacity Team Charleroi. Wim has demonstrated exceptional resilience and determination in his athletic career. He began competing internationally at the age of 15. 

His journey in para sports began with swimming. He finished sixth at the Paralympics in 2004. Wim has achieved international success, placing third at the World Championships in both 2021 and 2022, and securing third place at the European Championships in 2021 and fourth in 2022. 

In addition to his athletic pursuits, Wim is a dedicated physiotherapist and osteopath. He is a father of three boys, balancing his professional and family life with his sports career. Wim’s current objectives are to participate in the Paris Paralympic Games and maintain his position in the world rankings. 

Orawan Kaising


“My current goal is to compete at the Paralympic Games for the second time, and Europ Assistance has been an invaluable partner on my sporting journey to realize that dream. Europ Assistance’s generous support is one of the reasons I was able to compete in the Kobe 2024 Para Athletics World Championships – an opportunity which takes me closer to qualifying for the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris. Their commitment to supporting para-athletes has been truly inspiring. It’s reassuring to know that there are organizations that believe in our potential and are willing to invest in our dreams”.

Orawan Kaising, a 22-year-old athlete from Bangkok. She competes in athletics under the Sports Association for Intellectual Disability of Thailand. Orawan has achieved remarkable success on the international arena.

Orawan’s notable achievements include winning a gold medal in the Women’s 400m T20 at the Dubai 2022 World Para Athletics Grand Prix – 13th Fazza International Athletics Championships. She also secured a gold medal in the Women’s 400m T20 and a silver medal in the Women’s 1500m T20 at the 11th Asean Para Games 2021 in Indonesia. 

Additionally, Orawan earned a silver medal in the Women’s 400m T20 at the 2023 Thailand 1st Nakhon Ratchasima International Para Athletics and another silver medal in the Women’s 400m T20 at the 2023 Asia Para Games in China.

Jakob Klinge


“My passion for cycling started in 2019 and I luckily discovered para-cycling in 2020. I suffer from an inborn orthopedic condition called club foot on both legs. Before discovering cycling, I had never been able to practice such an intense and persistent sport without having sore feet after training. When I started competing, my desire to push my personal limits grew day by day”.

Jakob Klinge is a 27-year-old physiotherapist in Erlangen, Germany. 

A road and track paracyclist, Jakob is an established athlete who has enjoyed international success with the German team. In 2022, on the track, he came 9th in the pursuit; in 2023, 8th overall and 10th in the pursuit. In the same year, Jakob became German champion and broke the national 1000-meter record at the World Track Championships in Brazil.

Jakob could not be selected for the Paris Games, but is not giving up, and beyond the international meetings between now and then, he is already setting his sights on the Los Angeles Paralympic Games in 2028. 

Jakob Klinge is trying to raise awareness of para-cycling and show that a disability is no obstacle to an attractive competitive sport. On his own YouTube channel, he regularly reports from his home and tells his fans about his current successes. 

Benjamin Lacroix-Desmazes

Sitting Volleyball

“What am I most proud of today? I think it’s to be part of the France sitting volleyball team and to be its captain. We are preparing for the Paralympic Games with a lot of enthusiasm. […] My biggest challenge is to balance my family and my professional lives with my life as a high-level athlete. Through financial support, Europ Assistance allows me to free up time to train for competitions”.

Benjamin Lacroix-Desmazes, 44, a physiotherapist in Argences, Calvados, is a passionate sportsman.

He excelled in sitting volleyball, first with the Caen club, with whom he won second place in the French Cup in June 2023. For the 2023-2024 season, lacking playing partners in Caen, he had to change clubs and joined Voiron, which also participated in the Coupe de France; with this Club, he competed against the best European clubs in the Ligue d’Argent in April 2024, and in the Ligue d’Or, in May 2024!

Benjamin has been a setter for the French team since 2017 and was recognized as a high-level athlete in 2019. Since July 2023, during the Bronze Nations League, he has been captain of the French team. The team is taking part in its first world championships in Egypt, qualifying for the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.

Benjamin is known for his leadership and versatility in team and individual sports (swimming, cycling and running). In particular, he was vice-champion of France in para-triathlon in 2019 and 2020. There’s no stopping him!

His engaging personality inspires those around him. Benjamin is married with three children.

Iñigo Llopis


“I think sport is a very important social tool. Ever since I was a child, sport has helped me overcome my disability by allowing me to be part of a group and play with friends. It also taught me that I could reach my goals and achieve what I wanted to do”.

Iñigo Llopis, a 25-year-old swimmer from Spain. He holds over 12 medals in international tournaments with the Spanish national team, along with 7 Spanish records and 2 international records.

Iñigo won a silver medal at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games in the 100m backstroke and secured bronze and silver medals at the 2024 Aberdeen World Series. He also won a gold medal in backstroke at the 2023 Manchester World Cup. Competing in two Paralympic Games (Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020), he is a triple medalist at the Madeira 2022 World Championships. 

His objectives for 2024 include aiming for gold in the 100m backstroke and winning a medal in the 4×100 mixed medley relay at the European Championship. He also aims to break the European record for the 200m backstroke and participate in the Paris 2024 Paralympic Game.

Balancing his athletic career, Iñigo works as a social worker. He is known for his determination and excellence in swimming. 

Brittni Mason


“I’ve been running track since I was 10, and I had no idea I would have the success I have today. I found out only later that I was eligible to be a para-athlete. So I am just saying, the sky is the limit. I want even more success. I have already had a very successful career, but that doesn’t stop me”.

Brittni Mason is a 26-year-old professional athlete from Orlando, the USA. She was born with Erb’s Palsy, which affects her left shoulder and arm. Despite the adversity, the athlete competes in sprinting events at the international level. 

During the Tokyo Paralympics games, she won a gold medal in the mixed 4 × 100m relay and silver medals in the 100m and 200m T47 events. She also set a new world record.

Brittni holds two master’s degrees. One of her objectives is to launch a nonprofit organisation for helping and sponsoring young athletes. 

Carla Oliveira


“Boccia is all about surpassing yourself! There’s no excuse not to do sport when there’s a sport that adapts so well to our difficulties”.

Carla Oliveira, 34 years old, is an experienced athlete from Porto, Portugal. She participated in the Summer Paralympics in Tokyo in 2020 and was selected for the Paris Paralympic Games. She has achieved significant results in boccia at the international level.  

In 2022, while pregnant, she won the gold medal at the World Cup held in Póvoa do Varzim, Portugal. In 2023, at the World Championship Games in Rotterdam, she ranked first. 

Carla has a degree in social education and works for Porto Football Club. She is responsible for organizing lectures, contacts with institutions, schools, and prisons. She is also a  public speaker who seeks to raise awareness of the differences through sport.

Carina Paim


“Sport has been part of my life since I was very young and taught me essential values such as rigor, ambition, determination, perseverance and punctuality. I apply these values every day to achieve my goals, not only in sport, but also in my personal life”.

Carina Paim, a 25-year-old athlete from Portimão, Portugal. She competes in athletics, specifically in the T20 class for the 400 meters.

The young athlete won a gold medal in the T20 400 meters at the 2018 European Championships in Berlin, and gold medals in the T20 200 meters and T20 400 meters at the 2019 European Indoor Championships in Istanbul. She also secured a bronze medal in the T20 400 meters at the 2019 World Championships in Dubai. At the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, Carina achieved a commendable 4th place in the T20 400 meters.

Carina aims to participate in the Paris Paralympic Games in 2024, continuing to build on her impressive track record. Her athletic achievements and commitment to the sport inspire the professional community.

Valeria Pappalardo


My motto is: the only impossible thing is the one you don’t try. If you don’t try, you’re sure to fail. Europ Assistance is like a coach, it’s close to me, it shares my values. It’s great to feel the support of Europ Assistance, not only in Italy, and to know that the whole world supports me in every race and every new challenge“.

Valeria Pappalardo, 56, is a swimmer from Pisa, Italy who works in the public health sector. She has won the Italian swimming championship several times.

In 2021, Valeria won 4 gold medals, one silver and one bronze. The following year, she achieved many more successes, including 5 gold medals, 3 silver medals, as well as second and third places in the World Series.

At national level, her results in 2023 were also remarkable: 4 gold medals, one silver and one bronze. In the World Series, she repeated her success of 2023, taking first and third place.

Valeria is driven by competition as an exciting challenge, with determination, resilience and sensitivity all at the same time.

Man-Kei To


As a person with a disability, we are no different than “you”. We also find close friendship there and practice our beloved sport at the highest level“.

Man-Kei (Kiki) To is a 34-year-old para-badminton player from Belgium. She is the second in the World singles ranking and was recently selected for the Paris Paralympic Games. As a full-time professional athlete, despite having a spinal cord injury, she achieved international success.

In 2022, Man-Kei became the second winner in the World Championship in doubles. Then, in 2023, she was the first in singles in the European Championship. This year, in the same category, she ranked third at the World Championship. 

Today, Man Kei’s main objective is to win the Paris Paralympic Games and maintain her position in the top 3 singles rankings. The wheelchair athlete is among the most powerful para-badminton players in the world.