Africa

Special Olympics has 21 accredited programs addressing the needs of African people with an intellectual disability in the areas of sport, health, education and leadership. Special Olympics contributes significantly in addressing the correlation between disability and poverty, a key issue for the continent.

Our athletes in Africa helped strengthen the growth in the region. Learn More
A moment of NBA glory for a Special Olympics athlete from Senegal. Khody Kone
Special Olympics is a champion for people with ID in Africa Learn More
In Malawi, African leaders confronted issues facing people with disabilities. Learn More

Stories From Africa


July 25, 2014 | SOI General: Headquarters

One Year To Go For 2015 World Summer Games

By Christy White

When the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games open in July 2015, it will be a world stage for people with intellectual disabilities to show their strength, skill, courage and determination.View Story When the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games open in July 2015, it will be a world stage for people with intellectual disabilities to show their strength, skill, courage and determination. The Games in Los Angeles, California, "will change the lives of people around the world who are mistreated and excluded because they’re ‘different,’” said Patrick McClenahan, President and Chief Executive Officer of LA2015, the Games Organizing Committee. The Games also are a chance for spectators and volunteers to have their preconceptions about people with intellectual disabilities changed forever. Getting involved with the Games by cheering from the stands or handing out cups of water to thirsty athletes is a sure way to change your view of people of all kinds. Special Olympics World Games -- and all of the 80,000 Special Olympics competitions that occur every year--invite the public to see the talents and capabilities of people with intellectual disabilities. It's a way to open eyes, to change attitudes and to break down barriers that have excluded people with ID from the mainstream of community. The 2015 Games will feature competitions in aquatics, gymnastics, track and field, basketball, football (soccer) and many other summer sports involving 7,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities from around the world.'Los Angeles is set to welcome more than 7,000 Special Olympics athletes from 170 nations to compete in 25 Olympic-type sports.

About Christy White:I am the director of Global Media and Public Relations for Special Olympics.
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July 23, 2014 | Africa: South Africa

Podiatry Students Join Special Olympics on Nelson Mandela Day!

By Lauren Wyndham Quin

Following in the spirit of Madiba, Special Olympics South Africa and the University of Johannesburg (UJ) hosted their first Fit Feet training event on 18 July.View Story Following in the spirit of Madiba, Special Olympics South Africa and the University of Johannesburg (UJ) hosted their first Fit Feet training event on 18 July. Eleven final year podiatry students attended to learn more about Healthy Athletes (HA) and caring for individuals with intellectual disabilities. In addition to the training, the students conducted a "mini clinic" for athletes from San Michele Home. Nomzamo Duma, Special Olympics Regional Clinical Advisor, lead both the theoretical and practical components and had the following to say: "This was a great celebration for Mandela Day, which brought in many wishes and opened doors for both Special Olympics athletes and clinicians alike and we look forward to a refined relationship with UJ in future." Following a wonderful day of learning, Mr. Ntuli, a lecturer at UJ has committed to attending the next HA screening, assisting with referrals and including Special Olympics in the agenda of the 2016 Health Sciences curricula review.

About Lauren Wyndham Quin:Regional Manager, Healthy Athletes
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July 23, 2014 | Africa: Malawi

Malawi prepares for Los Angeles Games

By Peter Kanjere

Special Olympic Malawi director Felix Chisowa. Malawi athletes training.

Special Olympics Malawi holds its 2014 national games in capital city Lilongwe from August 28 to 29 2014 in preparations for the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles, the United States.View Story Special Olympics Malawi holds its 2014 national games in capital city Lilongwe from August 28 to 29 2014 in preparations for the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles, the United States. The Lilongwe games will see 180 athletes from 14 districts taking part in athletics, table tennis and soccer sporting activities in a bid to make the grade for the Malawi national team for next year's games in the States. “It is with great pride that we stand ready to host our 2014 Special Olympics Malawi games. Please join us in supporting our athletes as they compete for the honour of representing our great nation at the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles where our athletes will compete in athletics," Special Olympics Malawi director Felix Chisowa said. Apart from the usual Special Olympics activities, the national event will also feature a national unified sport where we combine people with and without intellectual disabilities to play. During the recent Special Olympics World Summer games that took place in Athens Greece from June 19, 2011 to July 4, 2011, Malawi was represented by five athletes who competed in athletics/track and field (long and high jump. 400, 200 and 100 meters racing) and won three gold medals, one bronze and three Silver medals. The Malawi team will be hoping to replicate the incredible success of 2011. The two sporting activities that the athletes will compete at the 2015 Would Summer Games include athletics, and table tennis. Ends.

About Peter Kanjere: I am a sports journalist, 35, based in Malawi, Africa. I am also president of Sports Writers Association of Malawi.
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July 17, 2014 | Africa: South Africa

Special Olympics Brings Hope to Hoima

By Lauren Wyndham Quin

This is only the beginning: Special Olympics Uganda will be returning to Hoima with athlete leaders to offer on-going support to this community in the fight against malaria. Stay tuned!View Story On 12 July 2014, community members gathered in the western town of Hoima to lead Special Olympics Uganda athletes in an awareness walk to the central sports centre, where athletes would participate in their first Regional Games. Alongside the athletics, volleyball and soccer, Local Government Health Officials provided information to caretakers on preventative measures against cholera and malaria, in an area where infections are rife and effects devastating. Special Olympics staff members were also invited to community talk shows and interviews to engage in discussions that would bring about a new perspective on inclusion and access to care for individuals with intellectual disabilities. But this is only the beginning. Since Special Olympics Uganda are recipients of the new Expanding Health Grant they will be returning to Hoima, with athlete leaders, to offer on-going support to this community in the fight against malaria. Stay tuned as we follow Special Olympics Uganda's journey of creating real impact and lasting change in Hoima.

About Lauren Wyndham Quin:Healthy Athletes, Special Olympics Africa Region
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July 01, 2014 | Africa: Kenya

Nandi county, Kenya, finds a heroine in Mrs. Kaittany

By Mr John Makathimo

Special Olympics Kenya was introduced to the Nandi County by a very courageous lady, Mrs. Rhoda Kaittany. Mrs. Kaittany was determined to seek help for her son, who has an intellectual disability, in a region that didn’t cater to children with special needs.View Story Special Olympics Kenya was introduced to the Nandi County by a very courageous lady, Mrs. Rhoda Kaittany. Mrs. Kaittany was determined to seek help for her son, who has an intellectual disability, in a region that didn’t cater to children with special needs. She took it upon herself to create the infrastructure needed to support a Special Olympics program in Nandi County, to find children with intellectual disabilities who were not in school, to find teachers and chiefs who were willing to be trained as coaches, to procure corporate sponsorship, and to identify facilities to host Special Olympics events. Her valiant efforts paid off and the Nandi program was launched with support from local government and a commitment to include the new sub-program in budget allocation for the 2014-2015 fiscal years. With this support the county was able to host its first county competitions in May at the Aldia Girls Secondary School. Approximately 45 athletes, 9 Unified partners and 45 family members attended the competitions. A remarkable highlight in Mrs. Kaittany's story is the discovery of three children with an intellectual disability who had grown up in virtual isolation due to the lack of facilities in the region, one was even tied with a rope and locked in a sheep’s pen to keep him out of harm's way. Happily these three youths are now involved with Special Olympics and were able to participate in the competitions. Mrs. Kiattanty remarked that one looked overjoyed about being outside, while another seemed shocked as if he was seeing the world for the very first time. The county put on a great competition for the athletes and provided them with entertainment in song, dance and poems that was thoroughly enjoyed by the family members and community who came out in full support to witness their children reveal their true potential.

About Mr John Makathimo:Special Olympics Kenya National Director
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Upcoming Events Around the World


Date

Event

Location

Dec 1 - 8 2014

South Africa Summer Games

One of our top Coaching Excellence goals calls for ongoing coaches’ education; this includes partnering with sports organizations to provide the highest and most up-to-date level of coaching knowledge. Coaching Excellence education helps our coaches better recognize each athlete’s potential. It also comes into play as we increase training and competition opportunities so that each athlete can reach -- or exceed -- their personal best.
For more information
Will Schermerhorn
Email:wschermerhorn@specialolympics.org
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Father O'Riley's Catholic School
1916 Aubrey Place Court

Vienna, Virginia
SOUTH AFRICA


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Special Olympics Contacts Information

Special Olympics Africa
Unit 300
Ground Floor, Process House
Epsom Downs Office Park
13 Sloane Street
Bryanston, 2152
Johannesburg
South Africa

Office:  +27 11 706-3323+27 11 706-3323
Email: asmith@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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