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85 male and female players representing the Kingdom in the Summer Games in Berlin

85 male and female players representing the Kingdom in the Summer Games in Berlin

85 male and female players representing the Kingdom in the Summer Games in Berlin

The Saudi Special Olympics Federation announced the Kingdom’s participation in the Special Olympics World Summer Games, which will be held in the Federal Republic of Germany from June 17 to June 25, 2023 in the capital, Berlin.

The Kingdom is participating with the largest Special Olympics delegation in the history of the Saudi participation, which began in 1995 AD in New Haven, Connecticut, in the eighth World Games, with 18 players, reaching the 16th session in 2023 AD, with 85 male and female players in Berlin 2023 AD.

The Saudi delegation includes 130 people, and the participation will be for the first time in 15 Olympic sports, including sports that it did not participate in previously, namely judo, equestrian, volleyball, handball, badminton, and beach volleyball. Saudi female players also participate for the first time in a number of Sports including swimming, football, weightlifting, and equestrian, and the percentage of female sports representation in the delegation is 59%.

The Saudi teams play unified sports, where Special Olympics players meet with partner players in one team in volleyball, bocce, basketball, table tennis, handball and badminton. The number of male/female partners is 19 partner players. Unified sports represent a global trend towards Inclusion and inclusion through sport.

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Saudi Special Olympics Federation, Dr. Maha bint Ahmed Al-Juffali, referred to the development witnessed by the sports sector in the Kingdom under the leadership of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and His Highness the Crown Prince – may God protect them – and the work frameworks that are compatible with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, noting With the support of His Royal Highness Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki bin Faisal, Minister of Sports, which led to the development of sports for all segments of society, including athletes with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

She also commended the important roles played by the International Special Olympics, represented by the regional presidency of the Middle East and North Africa region, led by its president, Eng. Ayman Abdel-Wahhab, in confirming the Kingdom’s entitlement to a larger and exceptional athletic representation for this version of the World Games, referring in this regard to the efforts of Her Royal Highness Princess Rima. Bint Bandar bin Sultan, Ambassador of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to the United States of America, Honorary President of the Saudi Special Olympics and Chair of the first board of directors of the Federation in establishing sports businesses and enabling women to participate after Saudi participation was limited to players.

And she said: “The development project led by the Ministry of Sports and the Saudi Olympic and Paralympic Committee through the federations’ support strategy provided an opportunity for the Saudi Special Olympics to work on the governance of sports business and reach a record Olympic participation volume relative to previous participations. The public, private and third sectors also contribute to The federation supported during the preparation period, and the number of sponsors of the Saudi delegation reached twenty sponsors.

Al-Juffali thanked the families of the Saudi Special Olympics players, noting the increased awareness about the importance of fighting laziness and encouraging their children to go through new experiences and make friends inside and outside the stadium, in addition to their commitment to training sessions for preparation in the preparation camps that were held in 4 regions around the Kingdom.

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