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Europe Eurasia

Special Olympics in Europe and Eurasia encompasses a diverse range of cultures, languages and customs. The region spans Iceland to Israel, Portugal to Siberia, Russia but we all have one thing in common – a passionate commitment to promoting respect, acceptance, inclusion and human dignity for people with intellectual disabilities through sports.

2014 European Games were held in Antwerp, Belgium. MORE
See the best videos from the 2014 Special Olympics European Summer Games. GO
Natalia Vodianova was among stars attending the European Games. SEE MORE
See hundreds of great photos from the European Games in Antwerp. See Them

Stories from Europe-Eurasia


August 01, 2015 | SOI General: Headquarters

Athletic Grace

By Nance Larsen

Rhythmic gymnastics requires elegant symmetry and a flow of dance moves and athleticism. Oh, and don’t forget to always point your toes! Gizela Billikova, a member of team Slovakia, has a beautiful lyricism that leaps right into an audience’s heart.View Story Rhythmic gymnastics requires elegant symmetry and a flow of dance moves and athleticism. Oh, and don’t forget to always point your toes! Gizela Billikova, a member of team Slovakia, has a beautiful lyricism that leaps right into an audience’s heart. The petite, 32-year-old gymnast has the rare ability to pull people into her performance, keeping the audience on the edge of their seats with her passionate interpretations. Her emotional connection with the crowd earned her two silver medals, one each in rhythmic clubs and all around, as well as three bronze medals in rhythmic ball, hoop and ribbon. Club Arabesque is a gymnastic club run by Gizela’s mother and sister, and is a labor of love for the family that has forged an incredibly strong bond between the trio. The program has as many as 12 to 20 students, ranging in ages 12 to 30 at any given time. Gizela is the school’s shining star. Her love of the sport quickly grew moving from a student to helping as a teacher.

About Nance Larsen:I am a volunteer with the Special Olympics International communications team.
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August 01, 2015 | SOI General: Headquarters

A Sea of Green

By Sarah O'Toole

With 88 athletes, 40 managers and coaches, 155 volunteers, family support and friends, Ireland was well represented at the 2015 World Games. And it showed at each event including Kayaking at Marine Stadium in Long Beach.View Story With 88 athletes, 40 managers and coaches, 155 volunteers, family support and friends, Ireland was well represented at the 2015 World Games. And it showed at each event including Kayaking at Marine Stadium in Long Beach. Four Team Ireland athletes competed - Nuala Browne, Rita Quirke, Nicola Higgins and Ian Staunton. All had great support. Rita's two cousins Deirdre and Mary traveled down from New York for Rita's first time meeting her cousin Mary. Her three sisters and brother travelled from her home town of Mullingar. Nicola's sisters, cousin, aunts and niece all attended too. She's been kayaking for the past 15 years and was the first athlete to represent Team Ireland in kayaking when the World Games were held in Ireland in 2003. Nicola's sister, Andella said, "Nicola is having the time of her life in LA. She's already informed us that she isn't going home! But she couldn't not return with her teammates. They are such a tight team and have been inseparable since we got here."

About Sarah O'Toole :Volunteer for the Special Olympics Media and Communications team at LA2015 Games.
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July 26, 2015 | SOI General: Headquarters

Historic Opening to World Games 2015

By Christy White

More than 65,000 crowded into the Los Angeles Coliseum last night to participate in the Special Olympics World Games Opening Ceremonies. Welcomed by President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, who officially opened the GamesView Story More than 65,000 crowded into the Los Angeles Coliseum last night to participate in the Special Olympics World Games Opening Ceremonies. Welcomed by President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, who officially opened the Games, these Games are the largest event hosted by Los Angeles since the 1984 Olympics and mark the return of the Special Olympics Summer Games to United States after 16 years.Athletes, coaches, officials, family members, volunteers and fans were treated to a star studded opening ceremonies that electrified the LA Memorial Coliseum headlined by Stevie Wonder and included performances by Avril Lavigne, Nicole Scherzinger, O.A.R., Cody Simpson, J Balvin, Becky G, Cassadee Pope and 'Reach Up LA' theme song creator Siedah Garrett. Emmy Award Winner, Debbie Allen directed the show. Stars from TV, film and sports also made appearances including Jimmy Kimmel, Eva Longoria, Lauren Potter, Michael Phelps, Colin Farrel and Jamal Charles.An amazing night for everyone!

About Christy White:Director, Global Media and Public Relations
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July 26, 2015 | Europe Eurasia: Israel

Special Olympics athletes show a model for future of Israel

By Maureen Rabbitt

Lucy Meyer speaks at welcoming party for Team Israel along with actor Tom Arnold and Consul General David Siegal.

As thousands of Special Olympics athletes from all around the world have arrived on Los Angeles soil already they are warming the hearts and transforming the minds of those they meet.View Story As thousands of Special Olympics athletes from all around the world have arrived on Los Angeles soil already they are warming the hearts and transforming the minds of those they meet. Today the Los Angeles Israeli Consul General, Mr. David Siegal, told Team Israel “by teaching us to accept people of all differences you show us a model for the future of Israel.” He met the delegation of 40 Special Olympics athletes at a welcoming party in their host town of Bel Air. “There is a teaching in Judaism that says: ‘If you can save one life, you can save the world’. And the same applies if you can change one life, you can change the world. By expanding your own possibilities, you inspire us to expand ours,” added Siegal. The welcome party was hosted in the private residence of Chuck and Jaime Meyer, who are parents to Special Olympics athlete Lucy, Special Olympics athletes from Southern California were there to enjoy Unified play activates with their Israeli friends as well celebrities.

About Maureen Rabbitt:I am Communications Director for Special Olympics Europe Eurasia.
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July 26, 2015 | Europe Eurasia: Germany

German Government fully behind Team Deutschland

By Maureen Rabbitt

(l-r) Christiane Krajewski, Chairperson of SO Germany, VP & member of the German Federal Parliament, Ulla Schmidt, Mary Davis, Regional President of SOEE, Consul General Hans-Jorg Neumann and Sabine Menke, SOEE.

The Federal Republic of Germany has shown its full support behind Special Olympics Germany as its sends a team of 137 athletes to Los Angeles to compete in the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games taking place in Los Angeles from July 25th to August 3rd.View Story The Federal Republic of Germany has shown its full support behind Special Olympics Germany as its sends a team of 137 athletes to Los Angeles to compete in the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games taking place in Los Angeles from July 25th to August 3rd. The Vice President and Member of the German Federal Parliament Ulla Schmidth has travelled to Los Angeles to enjoy the game and cheer her team on. Along with Los Angeles Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany, Hans-Jörg Neumann, VP Schmidth hosted a reception on July 23rd, to honour Team Deutschland in their host town of Monterey. At the reception Consul General Neumann told the team of Germany's pride for the athletes and asked them to show the world what they can achieve.

About Maureen Rabbitt:I am communications director for Special Olympics Europe Eurasia.
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Upcoming Events Around the World


Date

Event

Location

Sep 7 - 13 2015

European Week of Sport

The European week of Sport is a new initiative of the European Commission to promote sport and physical activity across Europe. The week will generate new activities and also build on already existing successful initiatives in the European, national, regional or local context. This European wide campaign will inspire Europeans to BeActive during the week and encourage them to stay active all year long.
For more information
More Details
Suzanne Coogan
Email: scoogan@specialolympics.org
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Cities throughout Europe

Nov 28 - Dec 6 2015

European Basketball Week

European Basketball Week is when we ask the broader basketball community to open more opportunities for athletes with intellectual disabilities in the game. Basketball Week involves athletes with and without intellectual disabilities, coaches, fans and families at more than 200 basketball events, matches, clinics and exhibitions across 33 countries.
For more information
Mirek Krogulec
Email: MKrogulec@specialolympics.org
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Various courts throughout Europe
Various communities in Europe Eurasia, Various
POLAND


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Special Olympics Contact Information


Special Olympics Europe Eurasia
3rd Floor, Morrison Chambers
32 Nassau Street
Dublin 2
Ireland

Office: +353 1 675-5710
Fax: +353 1 707-1748
Email: mrabbitt@specialolympics.org

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Special Olympics Blog

The Start of the Solution

Young people from around the globe with and without intellectual disabilities are coming together at the SOGenUin Summit as part of the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games with one goal - to change the world.

 

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Posted on 2015-07-23 by Natalie

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