Special Olympics Switzerland
Special Olympics is the world’s largest sports movement for people with intellectual disabilities. It is present in 200 countries and offers competitions in 36 summer and winter sports. More than 6.3 million athletes, 830,000 registered family members, 500,000 coaches and more than 1.1 million volunteers belong to the movement and contribute to its uniqueness.
The vision of Special Olympics is an inclusive world for all, driven by the power of sport, through which people with intellectual disabilities live active, healthy and fulfilling lives.
The mission of Special Olympics is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.
OFFRE ET MANDAT
Special Olympics promotes sport for people with disabilities and is committed to an inclusive society. The following activities are offered by Special Olympics Switzerland:
- Unified Clubs an events – Regular sport and social life
The Unified program provides regular training and opportunities for physical activities for children, young adults and adults with disabilities in existing clubs and sporting events and works towards an inclusive society. “Every time Aaron participates in the UBS Kids Cup, his self-confidence increases massively.” Anita Bamert Näf, mother of Aaron Näf
- Competitions and Games – Participate in regional and national competitions
Special Olympics offers nearly 70 regional competitions in 20 sports each year. Every two years, National Summer and Winter Games are held with 1,800 participants in the summer and approximately 600 in the winter. The “Divisioning” divides athletes of various levels into homogeneous groups and gives everyone the opportunity to succeed. “Since I joined Special Olympics, I’m having even more fun in life.” Noëmi Suter, athlete
- World Games – A physical and intellectual development
During the year, the members of a Swiss delegation prepare for the World Games and make remarkable progress both in sports and in mental health. The World Games are also held every two years, alternating between winter and summer. “I learn to assert myself at Special Olympics competitions.”Philipp Lachenmeier, floorball player
- Formation – Specialized knowhow for an optimal promotion of sport
Special Olympics offers courses for coaches to provide know-how in their respective sports and to prepare them for offering trainings for people with disabilities.“In the Inclusive Sports course, we learned how to perfectly adapt training to individual needs.” Claudia Emery, coach
The Special Olympics movement was created in the United States in 1968 by Eunice Kennedy-Shriver (†2009), sister of the former president of the United States John F. Kennedy. In 1988, the International Olympic Committee officially recognized the movement and gave it the right to use the name “Olympics” worldwide.
Since 1995, Special Olympics Switzerland is present in Switzerland as an independent foundation.
Commitment as a member of the Foundation Board
Bruno Barth, National Director of Special Olympics Switzerland, greatly appreciates Dominique Brustlein’s commitment to the foundation:
“Dominique has been involved with our foundation for many years. It all started when she helped organize the delegation camp of the Swiss Delegation preparing for the World Summer Games Los Angeles 2015. She actively supported the organization of the camp and made it possible to finance these important training days for Team Switzerland through her network. We were very pleased that she even travelled to Los Angeles with the whole delegation to get an idea of the mission of Special Olympics and the importance of sport for people with intellectual disabilities and how important these events are for the athletes.
In addition, since 2019, Dominique is a member of our Foundation Board, which is very important for the networking for Special Olympics in the French-speaking part of Switzerland.”