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November 29, 2013 | Africa: South Africa

In South Africa, a Youth Summit and Inclusive Camp

By Ms. Annemarie van Wieringen

Special Olympics South Africa hosted a number of events to celebrate Eunice Kennedy Shriver Day. 

The first event, a Youth Summit, was held in Phokeng at the Royal Bafokeng Nation North West Province. Youth with and without disabilities came together for a 3 day conference to promote respect, dignity, and inclusion for people of all abilities. The summit attracted 50 partners, 30 athletes, 12 school chaperones, and 13 staff and volunteers, including Peace Corps. The closing ceremony was also attended by the Head of the Royal Bafokeng Institute, the Program Director from Peace Corps, and former Banyana Banyana football celebrity Nthabeleng Modiko who came along to motivate the youth. 

Ricardo, a student of Charora High School was very inspired by the discussions on EKS, “ the thing that I will remember about the Special Olympics Youth Summit was the session where we learned about the creator of Special Olympics, Eunice Kennedy Shriver. She had that passion to let the world know that we have people that we neglect and it’s time to be with them. She had a human heart and I will never forget that how important Special Olympics is.” 

The second event, a Camp Shriver that took place at the 3 Square Sports complex in Alexandra. It was a five day camp with 98 participants generously funded by Kim Samuel and the Samuel foundation. The camp trained in four sporting codes basketball, netball, football (7-aside) and athletics (4xrelay). The event was widely covered by local media. The camp was supported by national players including former Banyana Banyana football player, Ms. Simphiwe Dludlu, and the Spar Ladies Netball Team player Ms. Ntswaki and her teammates.  The camp began with a torch run and parade through Alex to create awareness. Alexandra Ward Counsellor Mrs. Julie Moloi honoured the event by officially opening it alongside the venue manager, Mr. Mandla Mahlungu from the Gauten

About Ms. Annemarie van Wieringen : Special Olympics South Africa CEO

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