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‘Talent Identification’ To Prepare Athletes For World Games

The positive impact of sports in Fiji will be seen in these national games, which will provide an opportunity to unite athletes from the special and inclusive schools.
06 Aug 2022 16:18
‘Talent Identification’ To Prepare Athletes For World Games
Curtis Funubana of Lautoka plays table tennis during the National Special Olympics Games 2022 at Natabua High School ground in Lautoka, today. Photo: WAISEA NASOKIA

The positive impact of sports in Fiji will be seen in these national games, which will provide an opportunity to unite athletes from the special and inclusive schools.
This was the remarks of the Permanent Secretary for Youth and Sports Rovereto Nayacalevu while officiating in today’s National Talent Identification Games at Natabua High School, Lautoka.

The Special Olympics World Games 2023 is to take place in Berlin, Germany, next year.

“We need to prepare our athletes,” Nayacalevu said.

“As such this talent identification games which have been targeted in five sports, athletics, table tennis, swimming, badminton, and powerlifting.

“Today, the idea is for athletes with special needs to be able to participate in sports and physical activity is increasingly accepted although there is a lot of work to be done.”

Nayacalevu said in many countries opportunities exist at the grassroots level through elite competition for people with disability to showcase their ability in sports and physical activity.

However, this is not uniform around the world despite positive and progressive changes.

“People with disabilities in developing countries face major barriers, which limit their independence as well as access to participation in sport and physical activity.”

There were close to 500 athletes, coaches, officials and support staff at the Games.

There were 14 Special Athletes teams that took part. They were from Rabi, Savusavu, Labasa, Ovalau, Rewa, Nasinu, Suva, Serua, Nadroga, Nadi, Lautoka (two teams), Ba and Ra.

Special Olympics Fiji Sports director Robin Dayal said Special Olympics is a global organisation that looks after people living with intellectual disability and tries to unleash their human spirit through the transformation and joy of sports everyday around the world.

“Some of the athletes are from the special and inclusive schools while others are from the communities. We also have our former athletes that have gone to the 2015 and 2019 World Games coming back to take part.”

Special Olympics committed thanked the Fiji National Sports Commission, Natabua High School staff and students, Mix FM, Northern Club management, Crest Chicken, Digicel, Punjas, and Fiji Water for their support.

Feedback: waisean@fijisun.com.fj



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