SALALAH, Aug 11 – The Dhofar Branch of the Oman Special Olympics Committee highlighted the importance of encouraging the people with special needs and raise much needed awareness on how to improve their lives in the Sultanate. The Committee reiterated its resolve through its participation in the Salalah Tourism Festival (Friday) and called for wide range of awareness in every corner of the governorate to ensure maximum participation to serve the cause of the people with intellectual disabilities.
Naif Ahmed Said al Shanfari, Chairman of Dhofar Branch of the Omani Special Olympics Committee, exhorted the visitors to recognise the accomplishments done for these people, as the Committee keeps on organising regular events to keep them engaged intellectually and socially.
Al Shanfari lauded the support extended by the public and private sector establishments to the Special Olympics Committee, especially the Oman LNG Development Foundation, which has financed buses for the welfare of the people with intellectual disabilities.
“Sport not only boosts people, it also helps in doing away with the stigma associated with it and encourages their greater participating in social activities. Thus this corner in the STF is very important,” he said.
The International Special Olympics is a global movement aimed at creating a new world in which the acceptance of each individual without any physical or mental discrimination is assured. This is active in 170 countries. Under a ministerial decree from the Ministry of Social Development, the Oman Special Olympics Committee was formed in 2010 in order to improve the behavioural, motor and professional skills of people with intellectual disabilities.
Al Shanfari exhorted the parents and partners to encourage everyone, especially youths with intellectual disabilities to take part in local, national and international events, which are designed to inculcate confidence among them. “Such events are also some kind of orientation to the society also to accept people with intellectual disabilities with grace and without any discrimination.”