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 will be held in Antwerp, Belgium . MORE
International Sports Press Association and Special Olympics become Partners LEARN MORE
HSH Princess Charlene of Monaco supports Special Olympics SEE MORE
NBA's John Amaechi launches learning disability sports initiative

Stories from Europe-Eurasia


September 16, 2014 | SOI: Europe-Eurasia

EurActiv spreads message of Special Olympics far and wide

By Suzanne Coogan

Special Olympics Cyprus athlete reaches for the stars on the podium after winning Gold in cycling!

This week EurActiv has shown to be a true friend to Special Olympics and we are thrilled! Through its coverage of the 2014 European Summer Games in Antwerp, Special Olympics has reached new heights across Europe.View Story EurActiv, the European Media Network present in 12 EU capitals, publishes free EU news in 12 languages. With 2.8+ million page views and 660,524 ‘unique visitors’ per month, EurActiv is the leading online media network on EU affairs. This week EurActiv has shown to be a true friend to Special Olympics and we are thrilled! Through its coverage of the 2014 European Summer Games in Antwerp, Special Olympics has reached new heights across Europe. EurActiv has been covering the European Games solidly since the Flame of Hope was welcomed on Belgian soil by His Majesty King Filip of Belgium and Belgium Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo on Tuesday September 9th. With 660,523 average monthly unique visitors across EurActiv websites the message of inclusion and acceptance for people with intellectual disabilities is reaching a massive audience. We’d like to share with you the news, interviews, opinion pieces and videos that EurActiv has produced about Special Olympics this week. Please enjoy!

About Suzanne Coogan:Senior Manager, Media and Public Awareness Special Olympics Europe Eurasia
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September 16, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Belgium

Learning has never been so much fun! Young Athletes @Antwerp 2014

By Maureen Rabbitt

Young Athletes also aims to educate the public about the skills of children with intellectual disabilities.

Antwerp Expo was filled with the sound of children's laughter and fun at the Young Athletes demonstration on Monday, Sept 15th.View Story Antwerp Expo was filled with the sound of children's laughter and fun at the Young Athletes demonstration on Monday, Sept 15th. Volleyball legend Vanja Grbic and Special Olympics Chairman Tim Shriver were there to enjoy but they would definitely agree the real stars of the day where the 20 young Belgium athletes all under the age of 8. Young Athletes™ is a unique sport and play program for children with intellectual disabilities. The focus is on fun activities that are important to mental and physical growth. Children ages 2 1/2 to 7 enjoy games and activities that develop motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Young Athletes is an early introduction to sports and to the world of Special Olympics. The children learn new things, play and have lots of fun! Parents say their children in Young Athletes also develop better social skills. The confidence boost makes it easier for them to play and talk with other children on the playground and elsewhere.

About Maureen Rabbitt:I am responsible for Communications & Branding at Special Olympics Europe Eurasia.
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September 16, 2014 | SOI: Europe-Eurasia

Families share hopes for Special Olympics with Tim Shriver

By Suzanne Coogan

Tim Shriver speaking with families of Special Olympics athletes at the European Games Family Forum, Olympic Town

Families of Special Olympics athletes had the opportunity of sharing their ideas about the future direction of Special Olympics with Special Olympics Chairman Tim Shriver at a Families Q&A session in the Olympic Town.View Story Families of Special Olympics athletes had the opportunity of sharing their ideas about the future direction of Special Olympics with Special Olympics Chairman Tim Shriver at a Families Q&A session in the Olympic Town. Families shared their hopes, challenges, concerns and ideas with Tim who encouraged each member to give their opinion. “As we plan for the next five years we must ask ourselves the big questions. Where is Special Olympics going? What needs to be changed? What do we do wrong, what are we doing right? I am asking for your opinion,” Tim Shriver told the group. The father of a Special Olympics France athlete said the most pressing challenge in Europe as he sees it is the lack of media attention and public awareness. Regional President of Special Olympics in Europe, Mary Davis, accepts this. “Generating awareness is a real challenge for us. We try hard to get the media’s attention, but reaching out to schools and young people must be a new focus for us. The young will educate society."

About Suzanne Coogan:Senior Manager, Media and Public Awareness Special Olympics Europe Eurasia
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September 16, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Ireland

Irish Athletes Get Checked Out At Healthy Athletes Program

By Fiona Hynes

Carrie Doyle getting the once over at the Healthy Athletes Program as part of 2014 European Games

While the focus of the 2014 European is very much on sporting activity, athletes are also being encouraged to avail of the fantastic services available as part of the Healthy Athletes program.View Story While the focus of the 2014 European Games is very much on sports, athletes are also getting free health screening checks from more than 300 medical professional volunteers as part of the Healthy Athletes Program. Team Ireland athlete Carrie Doyle was certainly making the most of the Program which aims to improve every athlete’s health and fitness in order to enhance their ability to train and compete and ultimately to improve the athlete’s well-being in daily life. 26 year old Carrie from Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin, who is a table-tennis athlete, took the opportunity to get a check-up from the dedicated medical volunteers working at the Games. All participating athletes have access to free health check services in seven clinical disciplines. Fit Feet (podiatry), FUNfitness (physical therapy), Health Promotion (better health and well-being), Healthy Hearing (audiology), MedFest (sports physical exam), Opening Eyes (vision) and Special Smiles (dentistry). 

About Fiona Hynes:PR, Marketing & Communications Manager with Special Olympics Ireland
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September 16, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Belgium

Unified cooking at the olympic town

By Ayla Colman

Christer Elfving and his cooking team

Every day a group of students with autism and a head chef cook at the Olympic Town. It’s called Unified Cooking.View Story Every day a group of students with autism and a head chef cook at the Olympic Town. It’s called Unified Cooking. Some impressive chefs cooperate, like Wout Bru and Viky Geunes. The students come from a cook school for students with autism. “The main goal of the school is to prepare the students for the circumstances in a normal working space,” says teacher An Martens. “In June, we started with the preparation for this week. If we don’t start that early, there could be too much changes for the students. That could be compared with a lot of stress. But the students are very enthusiastic.” Yesterday’s chef Christer Elfvings hopes that the students will keep on working in the cook area. “The main goal is not only to awake the Olympic fire, but also the fire in the cooking station.” The chef would love to work together with the students in the future. “I’ve done a lot of projects like this and I always try to hold the contact with my colleagues. In the kitchen you can always use some help.”

About Ayla Colman:I am a Belgian volunteer as a reporter at the media centre of Special Olympics 2014
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Upcoming Events Around the World


Date

Event

Location

Sep 20 - 21 2014

Special Olympics Unified Volleyball Tournament

Join us on September 20-21 at the Atlas Arena in Lódz, Poland during the Federation of International Volleyball (FIVB) Men’s World Championship where athletes and unified partners from Special Olympics Poland will compete in a Unified volleyball match just before the final. Hope to see you there!
For more information
Krzysztof Krukowski
Email: kkrukowski@specialolympics.org
View More

Atlas Arena
Lódz, Poland
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

Bursting with Pride

"I’m looking forward to the day when Mary will become a Special Olympics Young Athlete. I cannot wait."read more »

Posted on 2014-07-25 by Ryan

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