A very warm welcome awaited representatives of Special Olympics when ESPN UK’s head office in London opened its doors for a special one-hour “Meet and Greet” session with the members of their staff in early February.
Charlie Boss, Commercial Director of ESPN Europe & Africa began proceedings by introducing Special Olympics Great Britain athletes, Kiera Byland and Mitch Camp. In his address to the crowd, Charlie stressed the pride he felt in being involved with Special Olympics and how the organisation had “genuinely changed his life.” Other speakers included Michelle Carney, CEO of Special Olympics Great Britain, and Chris Bence, Director, Corporate Alliances, Special Olympics International.
ESPN presenter Alexis Nunes led the panel. She talked with Kiera and Mitch about their experiences with exclusion and bullying and how finding sport through Special Olympics had changed their lives. During this poignant and entertaining session, Mitch described his involvement with Special Olympics Great Britain as "the experience of a lifetime."
Both Chris and Michelle praised the relationship between ESPN and Special Olympics and highlighted the vital role the movement plays in the lives of people with intellectual disabilities. Michelle took the opportunity to invite everyone to take part in or support the Special Olympics Great Britain Unified Mile on Sunday, 24 May in London.
According to Charlie, the aim of the panel was to build a connection between Special Olympics and his team, to “inspire [their] hearts and minds.” He wanted to encourage his staff to get involved and to “contribute to the ecosystem of Special Olympics Great Britain,” and, judging by the response to the session, his goal has been efficiently achieved!