TORONTO, Nov. 27, 2013 /CNW/ - November 26 marked another important
milestone for Special Olympics Canada, which is dedicated to enriching
the lives of individuals with an intellectual disability through active
participation in sport. More than 70 Special Olympics athletes, family
members, volunteers and staff gathered from across the country for
"Hill Day," an opportunity to meet one-on-one with Senators and Members
of Parliament and participate in a friendly sport competition on the
front lawn of Parliament Hill, hosted by Olympic Gold medalist and
Special Olympics Canada board member Mark Tewksbury.
The daylong initiative served as an opportunity to thank the federal
government for its sustained support over the years and to request, in
person, additional support through increased federal funding. Special
Olympics Canada delegates met with more than 100 MPs and Senators on
Hill Day, including Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Justin Trudeau,
Thomas Mulcair, Jim Flaherty, Bal Gosal and Nancy Greene Raine.
"The support of our federal government is integral to the ability and
success of Special Olympics to positively impact the lives of Canadians
with an intellectual disability through sport," said Lindsay Glassco,
President and CEO of Special Olympics Canada. "With increased federal
funding we will be able to reach more Canadians with an intellectual
disability without compromising the quality of Special Olympics
In 2012, Special Olympics Canada launched a five-year strategic plan
which aims to broaden the delivery of high-impact, cost effective,
community-based programs for athletes with an intellectual disability.
Currently, approximately 5% of Canadians with an intellectual
disability are registered with Special Olympics in Canada. Special
Olympics Canada and the twelve provincial and territorial Chapters are
committed to significantly increasing this number.
The additional funding requested of the federal government will go a
long way in helping Special Olympics Canada achieve its targets.
Special Olympics Canada looks forward to the 2014 federal budget
announcement to see if the federal government has decided to continue
to support the Special Olympics movement in Canada, and invest in
communities across Canada, by including its request for additional
About Special Olympics Canada
Established in 1969, the Canadian chapter of this international movement
is dedicated to enriching the lives of Canadians with an intellectual
disability through the transformative power and joy of sport. Operating
out of sport clubs in all Canadian provinces and territories, except
Nunavut, this grassroots movement reaches beyond the sphere of sport to
empower individuals, change attitudes and build communities. From
two-year-olds to mature adults, more than 35,880 athletes with an
intellectual disability are registered in Special Olympics year-round
programs across Canada. They are supported by more than 16,452
volunteers, including more than 12,209 trained coaches.
For more information, visit www.specialolympics.ca or follow us on Facebook and Twitter (@SpecialOCanada).
Image with caption: "Special Olympics athletes pose with Senator Jim Munson, Minister of Sport Bal Gosal, MP Ryan Leef and Olympic Gold Medalist and Special Olympics Canada board member Mark Tewksbury on Parliament Hill, before participating in the Special Olympics Amazing Race. Photo by Glyn Davies (CNW Group/Special Olympics Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20131127_C5610_PHOTO_EN_33969.jpg
SOURCE: Special Olympics Canada
For further information:
For media enquiries and to arrange interviews, please contact:
Director, Marketing & Communications
Special Olympics Canada
T: 416.927.9050, ext. 4383