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World Games Spotlight: Rehan Ali, Libya

Rehan grew up in a part of Libya where people with Down syndrome face widespread discrimination in education, training, and even medical care. Early on, her family had to cope with stigma and her rejection from society.

This struggle continued when Rehan was not accepted into the school system. Her parents took up the challenge and pushed for her to be educated along with her peers. But it was not to be. Eventually, her family decided to teach her at home.

The family also tried hard to find ways to discover Rehan’s talents and help her make friends. Soon, she discovered her love for swimming; her mother became her personal coach on the beach in Benghazi.

When Rehan joined Special Olympics, she began working even more to improve her skills. She excelled at the Special Olympics Regional Games for Middle East and North Africa in 2018 and at the World Games in Abu Dhabi in 2019. In fact, she won gold, silver and bronze medals.

She is so excited to be competing at the World Games in Berlin—and once again proving all the great abilities of people with Down syndrome.

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