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 18, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Belgium

Healthy Athletes Saving Lives at Antwerp 2014

By Maureen Rabbitt

Volunteer medical specialists at Healthy Athletes conduct free examinations in a whole range of medical care and services.

Volunteer health professionals at a Healthy Athletes Fit Feet clinic may have saved the life of a Special Olympics athlete Wednesday. They found she had an infection caused by a toenail growing into her flesh.View Story Volunteer health professionals at the Healthy Athletes Fit Feet clinic may have saved the life of a Special Olympics athlete Wednesday. They found she had an infection caused by a toenail growing into her flesh. ”Untreated, the blood of the athlete could have been poisoned within three days, which could cause death” says Carine Haemels, President of the International Federation of Specialists in Podiatry and Regional Consultant to the Fit Feet Program of the Special Olympics European Summer Games 2014. "We immediately referred the athlete to a specialist and in this way her life was probably saved. In many cases people with an intellectual disability have a different sensibility to pain and as conditions develop may not feel the pain any more. So it can often happen that health problems are not revealed in time. A case like this proves that our work and the work of Special Olympics Healthy athletes is vital.”

About Maureen Rabbitt:I am responsible for Communications & Branding at Special Olympics Europe Eurasia.
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September 18, 2014 | SOI: Europe-Eurasia

Legends Merckx and Van Himst show true support to Special Olympics athletes

By Suzanne Coogan

Eddy Merckx and Paul Van HImst enjoy some fun with Special Olympics athletes at European Games 2014, Antwerp

Two of the world’s biggest sporting icons, Eddy Merckx & Paul Van Himst, showed their passion for Special Olympics by meeting athletes competing at the European Games.View Story Two of the world’s biggest sporting icons, Eddy Merckx & Paul Van Himst, showed their passion for Special Olympics by meeting athletes competing at the European Games. Described as the world’s greatest ever cyclist Eddy Merckx & Belgium’s top goal scorer Van Himst presented medals to football and cycling athletes on day four of competition. Five times winner of the Tour de France and Giro d’Italia each and World Champion three times, Merckx said: “The passion of Special Olympics athletes is an example to us all. Games like these don't focus on disabilities only abilities,” Merckx added. Soccer legend Paul Van Himst watched pitch side when Special Olympics Belgium were victorious in their match against Special Olympics Luxembourg. “I admire Special Olympics athletes because they are motivated and hungry to perform. It is inspiring to be here. Games like these really make a difference in society,” said Van Himst.

About Suzanne Coogan:Senior Manager, Special Olympics Europe Eurasia
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September 17, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Belgium

European Parliament hosting Special Olympics Youth Leaders

By Agnieszka Krukowska, Youth Activation Coordinator, SOEE

Youth Leaders presenting recommendations for inclusion through sport in the European Parliament in Brussels

European Youth Activation Summit brings together 50 Youth Leaders from 11 Special Olympics programs across Europe/Eurasia during Special Olympics European Summer Games in Antwerp, Belgium.View Story European Youth Activation Summit brings together 50 Youth Leaders from 11 Special Olympics programs across Europe/Eurasia during Special Olympics European Summer Games in Antwerp, Belgium. It's been a gathering for future - discussions, plans and recommendations for inclusion through sport. During 5 days of workshop sessions youth leaders identified needs and challenges that young people are still facing with regards to inclusion in sport clubs, schools, leisure clubs and others. As a result, they have developed recommendations which were presented to the European Parliament on Tuesday. Now it’s time to go back home and inspire youth from their local communities. Exciting plans and projects ahead of us! If you want to hear more about our teams, please see: http://eyas2014.wordpress.com/.

About Agnieszka Krukowska, Youth Activation Coordinator, SOEE:I am SOEE staff member working in the field of Youth Activation and Project Unify.
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September 17, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Belgium

Rob Vanoudenhoven visits Unified Cooking

By Charlotte Vanhaevermaet

Rob Vanoudenhoven and Viki Geunes

Wednesday afternoon, Rob Vanoudenhoven paid a visit to the Olympic Town in Antwerp. There he got to meet chef Viki Geunes.View Story Celebrity Ambassador to the Games Rob Vanoudenhoven paid a visit to the Olympic Town in Antwerp. There he met top chef Viki Geunes. “There exists a similarity between the sports field and the kitchen. Both in the field and kitchen you work in a team and it really satisfies you when you obtain a great result," said Geunes. “Lots of people tend to turn heads when they see someone with an intellectual or physical disability. It happens too often that people with a disability are trying to prove what they cannot do, instead of focusing on the things they can do," Vanoudenhoven says. Rob Vanoudenhoven wants to make a warm appeal to everybody: “It is now time for absolute inclusion and acceptance of people with an intellectual disability in our society. When do people with a disability get their chance? Media attention for Unified Cooking is great, but it can be better! It has to become a way of living."

About Charlotte Vanhaevermaet:I am Charlotte Vanhaevermaet I am a volunterr contributor at the media desk in Antwerp Expo. I study Multilingual Professional Communications.
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September 17, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Belgium

Viki Geunes cooks in Olympic Town

By Charlotte Vanhaevermaet

Today Viki Geunes hosted the Olympic Town in Antwerp today. He cooked together with people with an intellectual disability.View Story Today Viki Geunes hosted the Olympic Town in Antwerp today. He cooked together with people with an intellectual disability. Viki Geunes is very excited about the initiative that takes place at Steen, Antwerp: “Unified Cooking benefits everybody. There is a major difference between real experience in cooking and theoretical skills. This way up-and-coming cooks can share ideas and learn from each other”. “Intellectual disabilities are no distant scenery anymore. It is favourable that steps are being taken to launch them into the media. When I received the offer to be a part of the Unified Cooking team, I immediately jumped into it”, Geunes says. According to Geunes everyone arrived very prepared at the Olympic Town. “By Unified Cooking, people with intellectual disabilities receive attention from other people than their families. It is heart-warming to see how they open up themselves to others.”

About Charlotte Vanhaevermaet:I am Charlotte Vanhaevermaet, contributor at the media desk in Antwerp Expo. I study Multilingual Professional Communications.
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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
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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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