Special Olympics to start a new movement

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Special Olympics to start a new movement
Mohamad Abdulla Al Junaibi and Yusuff Ali MA being presented with a signed football by a Special Olympics athlete. Also seen are Peter Wheeler and Lulu Group CEO Saifee Rupawala.

Abu Dhabi - Yusuff Ali MA says the global event will further strengthen the UAE's image as one of the most benevolent countries in the world

By Ashwani Kumar

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Published: Tue 21 Nov 2017, 10:12 PM

Last updated: Wed 22 Nov 2017, 12:20 AM

The Mena Special Olympics Regional Games 2018 and Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 are not just major sporting events but it will be a start of a new movement, officials said.

World Games higher committee CEO Peter Wheeler noted it is for the first time the Games will be held in the Middle East.

"The Abu Dhabi event will set a milestone for future movement," Wheeler said during an event to announce LuLu Group International as first official and exclusive retail sponsor of Special Olympics World Games.

Come 2019, there will be 20,000 volunteers in Abu Dhabi. And Wheeler said partnerships like one inked with LuLu Group will complement the efforts taken by the organisers in volunteering and fund-raising.

"We are expecting many great people like Yusuff Ali to come and support the Special Olympics," said Mohamad Abdulla Al Junaibi, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi World Games Higher Committee.

"The Indian community has been very supportive. We work and build together," Al Junaibi said about the India-UAE relationship.

He is expecting more volunteers to join hands. "My wife and daughter have signed up to volunteer and we are looking forward to everyone else getting involved," Al Junaibi added.

LuLu Group International chairman Yusuff Ali MA said the global event will further strengthen the UAE's image as one of the most benevolent countries in the world.

"The efforts initiated by the local organising committee are highly commendable. Apart from sponsoring, my entire team at LuLu Group assures whole hearted support to this event. Indian schools will also be part of the Games as volunteers," he said.

Later, special athletes set the ball rolling for the new partnership.


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