The Egyptian Special Olympics Regional Football Cup has just started as of February 14, 2014 and will continue until February 20, 2014. This tournament involves the countries of North Africa, who will compete right here in Cairo.
The Special Olympics in Egypt was first established in 1995. It gives an opportunity to handicapped people to compete in any of 15 different sports. The Special Olympics are different than the Paralympics in the sense that the Special Olympics are geared down for people with difficulties that don’t have much to do with physical disabilities (mentally challenged). The Paralympics, on the other hand, are made for contestants with physical disabilities, hence the word para (some sort of paralysis).
The idea of the Special Olympics goes back much further, and it happens yearly across the globe in more than 150 countries. The whole Special Olympics program in Egypt is made up of 480 coaches, 1,100 family members, 1,225 volunteers, and 24,787 athletes. Clearly, it is a very big program that runs mainly because of the hundreds of volunteers that kindly aid in the organisation of its specific events and its year round events.
I think that the idea behind the Special Olympics is amazing and if we do not have the chance to volunteer and help it, then we should at least show up to the competitions and show our support for the courageous participants. The Special Olympics Athlete Oath sums up their bravery and that of the whole program: “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”
By Ali Badr