July 19, Hong Kong - FWD Group (“FWD”) and Special Olympics Hong Kong (SOHK) join hands for a long-term partnership to support young people with intellectual disabilities. Featuring two key initiatives, the Unified Schools and Athlete Leadership programs. The collaboration aims to help Special Olympics athletes to develop their potential and confidence while encouraging social inclusion. While launching the local partnership, FWD and SOHK also took the occasion to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Special Olympics.
“We are honored to partner with FWD on Special Olympics 50th Anniversary, which is such a special occasion. FWD’s support allows SOHK to nurture more athlete leaders and mentors, and establish collaborations with local organizations in order to secure job opportunities for athletes in the future. Through our collaboration with local schools, we can also create bridge of communication between youngsters of both with or without intellectual disabilities, building harmonious environments in school and in the society.”
Also in attendance at the ceremony were notable Hong Kong athletes Yapp Hung-fai, Hong Kong football team goalkeeper and “Marathon Couple” Yiu Kit-ching and Chan Ka-ho, alongside more than 100 Special Olympics athletes, students from unified schools and FWD volunteers. During the ceremony, the attendees participated in a game of bocce, a sport unique to the Special Olympics, and emerging sport dodge bee, to showcase the spirit of social inclusion while showing how sports can bring people together and change people’s lives.
Unified Schools, an initiative supported by the partnership to celebrate inclusion and acceptance, aims to unify six schools every year and engage 800 young people through 17 sporting and non-sporting activities. Athlete Leadership aims to empower 30 Special Olympics athletes and mentors in a series of skills development workshops to further their skills in the workplace and in their everyday lives. FWD and Special Olympics will also collaborate with local employment agencies and companies to help athletes develop their leadership potential and search for employment opportunities.