Special Olympics UAE concluded its second Training Camp in Al Ain, in preparations for the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023, taking place from 17 to 25 June.
The UAE will be participating in 20 different sports, and the Special Olympics UAE delegation is one of the largest from the MENA Region, comprising 75 athletes with intellectual and developmental disabilities and 32 unified partners.
Special Olympics UAE athletes held various training sessions during the camp across different sports, including beach volleyball, volleyball, basketball, athletics, equestrian, roller-skating, table tennis, powerlifting, swimming, badminton, bowling, and cycling. Special Olympics held its first training camp earlier this year and athletes participated in many events during 2023 to prepare for the upcoming World Games, including Yas Triathlon, Third National Sailing Camp, DIBS – Citizen Open Bowling Tournament, and the Emirates Swimming Cup.
His Excellency Talal Al Hashemi, National Director of Special Olympics UAE, said: “We are excited to see our athletes gear up for their upcoming participation in the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023. We are proud of their progress, and their resolve and commitment to best represent the UAE, which has the largest participating delegation from the MENA region. We started the preparations and training sessions months ago and continue to provide all support needed for our athletes to complement their enthusiasm and strong can-do attitude.”
His Excellency added: “Our participation in the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 underscores our journey towards promoting an inclusive community, which accelerated with the hosting of the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019. We will continue the momentum during the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 and will represent the UAE as one of the biggest supporters of inclusion and People of Determination globally.”
In collaboration with the National Ambulance, Special Olympics UAE has recently held several training sessions under the “Train Safely” initiative. The initiative provides all the Special Olympics UAE staff with the necessary medical and first-aid skills and strengthens the delegation’s health and safety credentials, making it one of the safest delegations participating in the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023.
Special Olympics UAE’s athletes have recently made many successful international participations, such as UAE Women’s Unified Football team’s training camp in Japan. In 2022, athletes were also able to achieve many global wins, including 16 medals in the Invitational Games Malta 2022, and 16 medals during their participation in the Special Olympics Austria National Games 2022.