Youth as Agents of Change
“We look to young people with and without intellectual disabilities to be our advocates and leaders of change in communities around the world,” shared Timothy Shriver, Special Olympics Chairman and CEO
. “Our youth leaders will bring to the Republic of Korea their unique experiences and insights about how Special Olympics can build communities of respect and inclusion for all and in return, they will bring home their work to influence real change with their peers and with key stakeholders throughout their communities, states and countries.” Yoona Kim and Yang Hyun (Yanni) Cho, Global Youth Activation Summit (GYAS) Co-Chairs
from the Republic of Korea said how important the GYAS is: “We need to spread the message of respect and acceptance. The present is important, but the future is as well. Changing the views of youth is as important as anything else. We are caring, connected, and creative. There are no limits, which make youth such powerful agents of change."
The 2013 Special Olympics’ Global Youth Activation Summit is the seventh such event to take place. The inaugural global youth summit was held in 2001 at the Special Olympics World Summer Games in Alaska. Since 2001 there have also been nearly 50 youth summits at national, regional and global levels, which have included representatives from nearly 150 Special Olympics Accredited Programs and 2,700 young leaders.
The Global Youth Activation Summit is one of several Special Olympics initiatives reaching more than 4 million young people with and without intellectual disabilities in all regions of the world.
The summit is made possible through an award from the U.S. Department of Education
and a generous donation from the Mattel Children’s Foundation
To learn more about the 2013 Special Olympics Global Youth Summit, Special Olympics and other ways young leaders can get involved, visit www.specialolympics.org/globalyouthsummit.aspx
From 29 January to 5 February 2013, the Republic of Korea will welcome more than 2,300 Special Olympics athletes from more than 110 nations to compete in seven Olympic-type winter sports as part of the Special Olympics World Winter Games. For information about the upcoming 2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games, visit the Games’ official website at http://www.2013sopoc.org/hb/en