VANCOUVER - The Province is building on its commitment to sport by providing $1 million to Special Olympics BC to host the 2014 Special Olympics Canada Summer Games in Vancouver, and to support B.C.'s Special Olympics athletes, Ida Chong, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development, announced.
The funding will be provided over the course of three years:
- $300,000 to support B.C.'s hosting of the 2014 national games.
- $700,000 to help Special Olympics BC build programs and competitions for British Columbians with intellectual disabilities to improve their health and fitness; create programs for Special Olympic athletes such as Healthy Athletes; and support the development of a stronger network of families and supporters to further empower athletes.
Up to 1,800 athletes, coaches and officials from across Canada will compete in 11 sports at the 2014 Special Olympics Canada Summer Games, with basketball, bocce and golf included for the first time.
Special Olympics BC is dedicated to providing individuals with intellectual disabilities opportunities to enrich their lives and celebrate personal achievement through positive sport experiences. In 55 communities throughout the province, they provide year-round training and competitive opportunities in 18 different sports to more than 3,800 athletes of all ages and abilities.
The aim of the Healthy Athletes program is to get more individuals with intellectual disabilities involved with Special Olympics BC in order to improve their health, fitness and lifestyle. It also involves free health screenings that help athletes get the medical attention they need.
The 2014 Special Olympics Canada Summer Games will be held in Vancouver July 8-12 at UBC and will be the largest ever held in Canada. These games will be a qualifier for the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games.
B.C. last hosted the Special Olympics Canada Summer Games in 1990.
Special Olympics BC: http://www.specialolympics.bc.ca/
Special Olympics Canada: http://www.specialolympics.ca/
Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development
Special Olympics BC
604 616-1342 (cell)