European Basketball Week 2016

2016 European Basketball Week

Backed by FIBA Europe and Euroleague Basketball, the aim of the 13th annual Special Olympics European Basketball Week was to promote and expand opportunities across Europe for individuals with intellectual disabilities, in order to transform their lives through basketball.

Expanding Opportunities Through Basketball

The week-long annual event ran from November 26th to December 4th 2016 all over Europe. It was a huge success with the participation of 19,000 athletes in 35 countries competing in 230 sporting events. The main focus of this year's European Basketball Week (EBW 2016) was mini-basketball, half-court 3x3 competition and Unified basketball games. Supported by 2,829 coaches, basketball is one of the most popular sports in Special Olympics Europe/Eurasia region with 56,296 registered basketball players.

2016 European Basketball Week Facts

  • 19,000 athletes
  • 35 Countries
  • 230 Local and national basketball events (3x3, mini-basketball, Unified)
  • 60 Professional Clubs
  • 25 National Basketball Federations 
  • 20 Coaching Seminars

Looking Forward to the Future

FIBA Europe and Euroleague Basketball's ONE TEAM program, along with 25 national basketball federations and 60 professional clubs across Europe threw their support behind the activation. To show their commitment and support, Euroleague Basketball dedicated 16 of their ONE WEEK matches to Special Olympics on November 30th, December 1st and 2nd.

FIBA Europe's General Secretary Kamil Novak, WNBA player and Special Olympics Global Ambassador Elena Delle Donne and Euroleague Basketball Legend and One Team Euroleague Ambassador Theo Papaloukas all shared supportive video messages creating a real buzz about this year's campaign.

Although the fun week of basketball is over for 2016, the momentum continues. EBW 2016 was a great opportunity to mobilize basketball communities across Europe, which reminded us that "Basketball for All" can be implemented by anybody. We look forward to growing the reach of EBW 2017 together in the coming year.

Goals for EBW 2016

European Basketball Week is part of Special Olympics’ on-going commitment to increase the number of registered basketball players in Europe to 60,000 with 600 additional volunteer coaches by 2016.

“It is a pleasure for FIBA Europe to be supporting this celebration of basketball in Europe. I call it a celebration, because that is exactly what European Basketball Week is. It promotes basketball along the same values that we at FIBA Europe prescribe to: making basketball accessible to everybody, from every walk of life. It also excites me to see the Special Olympics community embracing 3x3 basketball, which is rapidly transforming the basketball landscape, taking our sport in an exciting new direction, by opening the basketball community to even more players,” stated Kamil Novak, Executive Director FIBA Europe.

Jordi Bertomeu, President and CEO Euroleague Basketball, commented: “We are delighted to continue working with Special Olympics in spreading the message of integration through basketball in our One Team Week games. During this week Euroleague Basketball celebrates the ongoing social work that our teams are doing in their communities through our social program; One Team. Special Olympics uses the power of sport to fight against exclusion and this is a message that we fully embrace. Together we are making an important and positive change in the lives of those that face difficulties.”
European Basketball Week ran from November 26th to December 4th 2016.

2016 European Basketball Week Resources

Access our collection of Special Olympics European Basketball Week resources that promote and expand opportunities across Europe for individuals with intellectual disabilities here.