75-strong Oman contingent for Abu Dhabi Special Olympics
March 7, 2018 | 10:12 PM
by Times News Service
This is Oman's largest team ever to participate in the Special Olympics Games, said Saif bin Mohammed Al Rubaeiy, Vice-Chairman of Special Olympics Oman. Photo-Supplied

Muscat: As many as 75 athletes from Oman will be participating in the Special Olympic Games, scheduled to take place in Abu Dhabi from March 14 to 25.

The participants will be competing against 1,200 athletes from 33 countries in 16 different sporting events.

“This is our largest team ever to participate in the Special Olympics Games and we are exceptionally proud to be representing Oman in the Regional Games in Abu Dhabi,” Saif bin Mohammed Al Rubaeiy, Vice-Chairman of Special Olympics Oman, said.

“Our athletes have been working hard and training for months and are ready to rise to the challenge. Their participation is living proof of the great potential people with disabilities have and a testament that a person can find joy, confidence, and fulfilment through the power of sports,” he said.

The events include athletics, tennis, table tennis, badminton, swimming, bocce, bowling, equestrianism, powerlifting, football, handball, volleyball and roller-skating.

All athletes have been supported by more than 450 coaches and 3,000 volunteers, apart from family and friends, who have been working tirelessly to encourage these special players achieve their goals.

“We would not be able to advocate and raise awareness on the potential of people with disabilities without their help. It is only by working together, in the same spirit of the Special Olympics, that we can improve their way of life and integrate them into society,” Al Rubaeiy said.

During the 11-day event, Oman will also play an active role in non-competitive events and programmes held to raise awareness, provide medical and psychological support, and to network and learn from one another.

For example, the Healthy Athletes Programme will offer free medical consultations for athletes and team members, the initiatives programme includes workshops for families to exchange experiences and increase public awareness on intellectual disabilities, and the Youth Summit will provide an opportunity to young people, including athletes and unified partners, to learn more about the Special Olympics movement and the value of integration.

Subscribe to our newsletter and be the first to know all the latest news