May 23, 2014 | Africa: South Africa

"An Amazing Feeling" on the Way to South Africa Summer Games

By Ms. Mmane Boikanyo

Pictures taken by Special Olympics Athlete and staff member, Mr. Jimmy Masina.

“Hearing people screaming my name and cheering for me was an amazing feeling,” Special Olympics South Africa swimmer Juan Marie said. She had just competed for a chance to represent her Province in the Special Olympics South Africa National Summer Games this July. Juan Marie said she loves Special Olympics because it allows athletes to participate and have fun. “It’s not always about winning but it’s about trying your best,” shared the cheerful athlete. The action-filled provincial swimming gala was held in Gauteng on April 14. The event was held to select the team that would represent the Gauteng province at the 2014 Special Olympics South African National Summer Games taking place from July 8th to 11th in Pietermaritzburg. Swimming is one of the most popular sports in the world. Unlike other sports, swimming is a life skill that is taught, first, to ensure safety and, secondly, for sports and competition purposes. Special Olympics' Aquatics covers a great variety of swimming skills, from short sprints to longer events and relays, and it caters to swimmers of all abilities, from strong, fast competitors to swimmers who find it hard to swim at all. The highlight of the event was when Special Olympics South Africa CEO Igna Steyn presented Debbie Dolphins Swimming Academy with a certificate of appreciation for their endless contribution towards improving the skills of our Special Olympics athletes. Debbie Dolphins have been offering coaching workshops for Special Olympics South Africa coaches at no cost to the organization. They have empowered coaches with the necessary skills to prepare athletes to become champions.

About Ms. Mmane Boikanyo : I work as a PR and marketing officer for Special Olympics South Africa
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