New York - Next week, for the first time, Lucy will
represent UNICEF and Special Olympics at the week-long Youth
Council meeting of the Global Partnership on Children with
Disabilities. She was also selected to be the only child
spokesperson at the Conference of State Parties on the Convention
on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, where more than 140
member states, disability movement leaders and experts from around
the world will gather.
Starting on June 9, the Global Partnership on Children
with Disabilities (GPcwd) Youth Council meeting will
be comprised of 20 young people from around the world who are
advocating for the rights of children with disabilities to be
prioritized. GPcwd is a network of more than 240 organizations
working to advance the rights of children with disabilities at the
global, regional and country levels. Later that week, on June 12,
Lucy will speak at the Conference of State Parties, in
representation of all children with disabilities around the world.
Lucy will also be meeting with representatives from the U.S.
Mission to the United Nations.
"Lucy's commitment to helping ensure children with disabilities
can realize their dreams is an inspiration," said Caryl Stern,
president and CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. "We are proud to
have Lucy represent us, and thrilled that she is bringing to a
global stage her critical message that all children, everywhere,
have a right to reach their full potential."
"Lucy's determination to ensure that children with disabilities
have the same opportunities to play sports, get a good education,
receive healthcare, make choices, and be part of their communities
is not just changing lives, it's changing minds, challenging
misperceptions, and focusing attention on the rights of children
with disabilities," said Janet Froetscher, CEO of Special Olympics.
"We are honored that Lucy, a gold medal-winning Special Olympics
athlete, is serving as a Global Messenger for the 2015 Special
Olympics World Games to be held in her hometown of Los Angeles."
Lucy and her family are also raising money to help Special Olympics
athletes reach the 2015 World Games and are working to secure an
additional Host Town to join the existing group of communities that
have volunteered to welcome Special Olympics athletes to the World
Born with cerebral palsy, the 15-year-old is passionate about
helping children with disabilities around the world. Lucy has taken
her message on behalf of children with disabilities to
Representatives and Senators in California and Washington, D.C., as
well as to President Barack Obama. Last year, Lucy was a
featured speaker at the U.S. Capitol for the launch of UNICEF's
flagship publication, State of the World's Children, that in 2013
was dedicated to children with disabilities. She has also
participated in speaking engagements on behalf of the U.S. Fund for
UNICEF in Los Angeles, and most recently at the organization's
annual meeting in New York.
In 2013, Lucy created a fund to support children with
disabilities in the developing world, helping raise more than
$100,000 for UNICEF's disabilities programs. With the support of
her parents, Jamie and Chuck Meyer, Lucy made a new funding
commitment of $150,000 to UNICEF to support the Global
Partnership on Children with Disabilities.
Lucy credits sports with playing a critical role in her
development, helping her to learn important skills such as
discipline, teamwork, and confidence.
Worldwide, an estimated 93 million children under the age of 15
live with disabilities, 80% of whom live in developing
countries. Many children with disabilities are denied access
to education, health care, and other lifesaving services, and more
often than children without disabilities face stigma,
discrimination, and abuse.