The Government of Canada Supports the Special Olympics Canada 2018 Summer Games
ANTIGONISH, NS: Special Olympics Canada not only empowers athletes and gives them a sense of inclusion and acceptance, but also changes the public perception of people with an intellectual disability.
This stable, long-term funding will help the organization sustain its empowering movement, which supports more than 45,000 children, youth and adults in Canada with intellectual disabilities through its extraordinary network of more than 21,000 volunteers. Athletes will have access to improved training resources and more coaches will be available to train them. The funding will also support programs that provide lessons for young athletes to learn about running, kicking, throwing and jumping.
In celebration of the Special Olympics' 50th anniversary, Minister Duncan made the announcement at the Special Olympics Canada 2018 Summer Games in Antigonish, where she is also meeting with athletes, parents, coaches, stakeholders and sponsors. She is touched by the perseverance, passion and determination shown by the athletes who competed in different sports.
"Congratulation to all the incredible athletes who have worked hard to be part of this Special Olympics Canada Summer Games. I celebrate your athleticism, determination and passion and I wish you good luck as you strive for personal bests. I also thank the many volunteers, coaches and organizers working hard to make this a most memorable Summer Games."
—The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport
"We are honored that the Government of Canada has made this incremental investment of $16 million toward providing all Canadians the opportunity to access sport, and we thank them for their ongoing support to Special Olympics in Canada. This commitment will allow Special Olympics Canada and our 12 provincial and territorial chapters to extend our reach to even more Canadians with an intellectual disability."
— Sharon Bollenbach, Chief Executive Officer, Special Olympics Canada
"On behalf of the Special Olympics Canada 2018 Summer Games, we are excited to have the support of the Government of Canada in helping bring this national event to Antigonish, and rural Nova Scotia. Organizing the Games has been a true community effort, and we are excited we have surpassed our fundraising goal of $2.2 million thanks to the generosity of various levels of government, as well as private businesses large and small."
—Marc Champoux, Games Organizing Co-Chair, Special Olympics Canada 2018 Summer Games
The Special Olympics Canada Summer Games is a national sporting event for competitive athletes with intellectual disabilities. Each athlete must qualify at the local and provincial level before competing at the National Games.
This is the second time Nova Scotia has hosted the Special Olympics Canada Summer Games. The first time was in 1994 in Halifax.
The Special Olympics Canada 2018 Summer Games is also a qualifying event for athletes to represent Canada at the 2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
More than 1,000 athletes, 290 coaches, officials and mission staff, and 600 volunteers are participating in the Special Olympics Canada 2018 Summer Games.
Nine sports are featured at the Games: athletics, basketball, bocce, golf, rhythmic gymnastics, powerlifting, soccer, softball and swimming.