Special Olympics Bharat

Mission: To provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with Intellectual Disability, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families and other Special Olympics athletes and the community. Special Olympics International to conduct Special Olympics Programs across India.Special Olympics is a global movement that uses sports as a catalyst for change to impact the lives of children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Using the power of sport, Special Olympics strives to create ...

Special Olympics Bharat
J-47 Lajpat Nagar-III
Lower Ground Floor
New Delhi, Delhi 110024
India
+91 11 29841362
http://www.specialolympicsbharat.org/

Board of Directors

Denzil Keelor, Sunil Kumar Malik, Sugandha Sukrutaraj, Jagannath Prasad Nadda, Adrian Kennedy, Usha Ram, Arun Kapur, Charles Borromeo, Victor Vaz, Ashok Goel, Pranavi Sethi, Syed Ali Ali Kazim, Rati Misra, Harpreet Singh, Ekta Jha, Melvin Clive

Mission

Mission: To provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with Intellectual Disability, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families and other Special Olympics athletes and the community. Special Olympics International to conduct Special Olympics Programs across India.Special Olympics is a global movement that uses sports as a catalyst for change to impact the lives of children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Using the power of sport, Special Olympics strives to create a better world by fostering the acceptance and inclusion of all people. The Special Olympics Bharat programme has so far drawn over 61804 coaches to work with over 850875 athletes across 31 State Programs Special Olympics believes that - People with Intellectual Disability can, with proper instruction and encouragements, learn, enjoy, and benefit from participation in individual and team sports. Consistent training is essential to the development of sports skills. Competition among those of equal abilities is the most appropriate means of providing incentives for personal growth. Sports training and competition strengthen and benefits people with Intellectual Disability physically, mentally, socially and spiritually. They also help their families and the community at large, both through participation and observation. This philosophy is reflected in the Special Olympics oath - "Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." Special Olympics aims to provide the most enjoyable, beneficial and challenging activities for athletes with Intellectual Disability, and help bring them into the social mainstream under conditions whereby they are accepted, respected and given a chance to become more productive citizens. Towards this, it encourages its more capable athletes to move from Special Olympics training and competition into school and community programmes where they can compete in regular sports activities. Our objectives: 1. Complement mainstream curriculum through physical education in special/integrated schools 2. Using a mix of class room teaching, physical education, outdoor activities, games and sport as a tool to motivate children with disabilities to join school and to remain in school thus increasing admissions and reducing drop outs. 3. To augment academic learning with other development programmes covering leadership training, health and hygiene to develop young leaders from the community. 4. Using sports as a tool to foster confidence and team spirit and to instill in the children and their families a sense of achievement 5. Create role models that will not only inspire the children but also motivate parents into letting their children attend school and participate in sports and other extra curricular activities 6. Providing a safe learning environment especially for girls 7. Promoting holistic development of persons with disabilities- fostering life skills, imparting a confidence and sense of achievement, giving them a platform to showcase their talent and to experience a sense of joy. 8. Training teachers to educate homogeneous groups of students thereby sensitizing them to needs of special children 9. Making communities aware of the 'abilities' of people with disabilities 10. Creating a cadre of teachers of Physical education from among the disabled- who can work with schools taking the work forward even after the intervention 11. Thus creating inclusive communities where people with disabilities can live a life with dignity.

Programs

Sports, training and competitions are the mainstay of the Special Olympics Program supported by 7 special initiatives designed to positively impact the holistic development of the athlete. Sports and Competitions: Special Olympics organizes sports and competitions at various levels- local, district, state, national and international and based on abilities and performance athletes cross each level to participate at higher consecutive levels. Special Olympics believes that people with Intellectual Disability can, with proper instruction and encouragements, learn, enjoy, and benefit from participation in individual and team sports and that consistent training is essential to the development of sports skills. Thus since sports remains the mainstay of the Special Olympics Programme the capacity of the athletes are constantly developed through regular trainings and other initiatives that help strengthen the athletes- mentally , physically and emotionally. Special Olympics Bharat works with over 8.5 lakh athletes with intellectual disabilities and are able to cover an additional I lakh athletes across all states and Union Territories in India each year. Each of these athletes is given an opportunity to train and compete in sports at their individual local and district levels. Based on their abilities and performance as laid out in the selection criteria athletes are selected from among these for the State Games and of these again the final winners are National Championships. Over 23750 athletes have participated in the National Games since 2002. The best performers also referred as the Selected Probables are then selected for National Coaching Camps that are supported by the Sports Authority of India for each of the 24 individual events to prepare them for international competitive events. Our achievements: Over 8.5 lakh athletes registered with us since our inception in 2001. 85 athletes and 25 coaches have participated in the 5 International Winter Games held between 1993 and 2009 winning a total of 19 medals- 8 gold, 8 silver and 3 bronze. 529 athletes and 123 coaches participated in the 7 International Summer Games held between 1987 and 2012 winning a total of 716 medals- 225 gold, 235 silver and 256 bronze. Over 23750 athletes participated in the 5 National Games held between 2001 and 2011 Creating a cadre of coaches and trainers: Special Olympics Bharat has a large pool of coaches and trainers that it draws on for training of its athletes with intellectual disabilities. Most coaches are sports persons and in some cases special educators. Special Olympics athletes are also trained as coaches based on their ability, knowledge and performance. Coaches also undergo constant training to equip them to cater to our growing number of athletes as stand alone coaches and trainers and also as physical educators at local levels and special schools. As it is with the athletes coaches are selected for higher responsibilities and roles based on their performance, abilities, assessments and selection test conducted by Special Olympics Bharat. As part of the Long Term Development Plan (LTDP), Advance Coaches Training Programs (ACTP) are organized to enhance their level of the sports knowledge. 15 such programs are conducted every year with a minimal participation of approximately 55 people per camp with 5 resource people per camp. Special Olympics Bharat also facilitates support for further education of athletes in programmes such as the Post Graduate Diploma in Sports and Yoga. An advanced Games Management System has been instituted. The GMS is a product aimed primarily at the Special Olympics, and is very specific to their needs for managing large- and small-scale events, along with registering and tracking athletes in competition and training. Our achievements: Over 53700 athletes have participated in the 179 National Coaching Camps organized since 2006. 47 Advanced Coaches Training Camps organized between 2008 and 2012, 2585 coaches trained and of these 15 are working with Special Olympics Bharat as Regional Trainers and 143 as National Trainers. Special Initiatives 1. Special Olympics Athlete Leadership Programs ( ALP's) The ALP's program allows athletes to explore opportunities for greater participation in our movement beyond sports training and competition: as coaches, officials, team captains, spokespeople and Board and committee members. These leadership roles give maturing athletes a voice in shaping the Special Olympics movement, and a chance to spread the word about the remarkable transformations our unified sports can bring about in individuals and families. Athlete Leadership Programs also provide a way for athletes to showcase talents and interests that may have gone unnoticed and also provide platforms for athletes for public speaking, media interactions, discussions on policy and governance, research and fundraising and understanding and analysis of financial reports. 2. Healthy Athletes Program The Special Olympics Healthy Athletes program helps athletes to improve their training and competition by focusing on overall health and fitness. This is achieved through basic health screenings, provision of preventative and some treatment services, educational information, and referrals for follow-up care. The goals of Healthy Athletes are as follows: To improve access to care at event-based and other health screening clinics; To make appropriate referrals for follow-up to community health professionals; To train health care professionals and students about the needs of people with ID; To collect, analyze and disseminate data on the health needs of people with ID; and, To advocate for improved health policies and programs for people with ID. The Healthy Athletes Programme covers 7 disciplines: Opening Eyes (1991) Opening Eyes, introduced to Special Olympics in 1991, conducts extensive vision screening and provides athletes with prescription daily and sports eyewear. Through a global partnership of SOI and Lions Clubs International (LCI), and with corporate support from Safilo, Essilor, and Liberty Optical, SO athletes receive the following: Extensive vision and eye health tests and refraction for those requiring further screening; Prescription eyeglasses, if needed; Prescription protective sports eyewear, if appropriate; and, Referral for follow-up care Special Smiles (1993) Special Smiles offers dental screenings, health education and prevention services, and refers athletes to potential sources of treatment and follow-up care. At a Special Smiles event, dental professionals provide the following services to athletes: Oral screenings; Oral health education; Individually fitted sports mouth guards, if needed; Oral health education and personal prevention products; and, Information for follow-up care by community-based dentists. FUN fitness (1999) FUN fitness, developed by the American Physical Therapy Association for SOI, has been a part of Special Olympics events since 1999. Physical therapists, assisted by physical therapist assistants and students, provide an assessment of athlete flexibility, functional strength, balance, and aerobic condition. Flexibility of hamstring, calf, shoulder rotator and hip flexor muscles; functional strength of the abdominal, upper extremity, grip and lower extremity muscles; static and dynamic balance; and, aerobic fitness are assessed and used as the basis for one-on-one education and on-site consultation to athletes and coaches on how to improve performance. Healthy Hearing (2000) Healthy Hearing provides external ear canal inspection, evoked otoacoustic emissions screening, tympanometry, and pure tone screening for those with identified need. Individual molded swimming ear plugs are offered at many Healthy Hearing screening events and referral and access to hearing aids is beginning to be offered. Healthy Hearing assesses the hearing of individual athletes, and reports to coaches and caregivers if any follow-up care is needed. Health Promotion (2001) Health Promotion focuses on healthy lifestyles and the facilitation of healthy choices by athletes in the areas of nutrition, bone health, hydration, sun safety, and tobacco use prevention and cessation. The rationale for SO to promote overall health is the long-standing awareness that people with ID frequently develop chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, obesity and diabetes, and that they tend to develop these conditions at earlier stages of life. Fit Feet (2003) Fit Feet was developed 2003 in collaboration with the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine, based in part on anecdotal reports from podiatric doctors about frequent foot and ankle pain in this population. Early Fit Feet screening events confirmed the extent of podiatric concerns in athletes with ID, concerns that were undoubtedly impacting sports performance. Healthy Athletes has developed Fit Feet to evaluate foot and ankle conditions. Athletes receive foot and ankle screening for deformities and are checked for proper shoes and socks. Education is provided in proper footwear and care of the feet and toes. When indicated, referrals are made for follow-up care. Med Fest (2004) "Medical volunteer days" are organized in order to help athletes obtain the necessary sports physical exam for participation in SO. In 1999, medical volunteers in Chicago coined the term "Med Fest" to describe these events and, in 2004, SOI adopted this concept as a new Healthy Athletes discipline. The purpose of Med Fest is fivefold: 1) to provide a high quality sports physical to people with ID, 2) to expose physicians, nurses and other healthcare providers to the ID population, 3) to recruit new athletes to SO

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