On June 17-25, 2023, a world-class event took place in Berlin - the Special Olympics World Games, which takes place by analogy with the regular Olympics and unites the international community for global issues of inclusion and meeting the needs of children and adults.
Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 is an event that was held at the highest level, in particular, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz took part in the opening ceremony and visited Ukrainian athletes, wishing them every success and victory. It was the Ukrainian athlete who carried the flag of the competition on behalf of all participants of the Olympics.
Thousands of athletes with intellectual disabilities competed in 26 sports. A large-scale opening with the participation of Germany's leading politicians and their colleagues from all continents, nine days of exciting competitions and a final festive closing - all this will forever remain in the hearts of the participants.
Traditionally, the Special Olympics Games are held on the eve of classical sports competitions, so in 2024 the EU will host the XXXIII Summer Olympics in Paris (France).
The events of the Special Olympics have an important symbolic meaning and at the same time are an opportunity to learn about the best practices of social policy in the world. The Special Olympic Movement was initiated by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the sister of US President John F. Kennedy. Since 1957, she has headed the Joseph Kennedy Foundation, which has two main goals: to provide protection against mental retardation by identifying its causes and to improve the way society treats citizens with intellectual disabilities.
Volodymyr Kosterin, a member of the Board of Trustees of the Special Olympics of Ukraine, noted that for almost 60 years of activity, the Special Olympic Movement has become an integral part of state policies aimed at protecting people's social rights and consolidating society for health programs.
"Government officials in Ukraine should pay more attention to the problems of solar people and actively support international events. This will have relevant calling effects, namely, attention to the fate of people in need of society's care, humanization of politics, formation of an atmosphere of care in society, further improvement of inclusion standards and adaptation practices, communication with movement leaders and professional communities. It is also a demonstration at the world level of the proper attitude of the Ukrainian state to people with intellectual disabilities and the support of their families."
Athletes from Volyn, Zhytomyr, Zaporizhzhia, Kirovohrad, Ternopil, Kharkiv, Kherson, Cherkasy regions and Kyiv were included in the national team of Ukraine (SOU). They competed in seven sports.
The Special Olympics of Ukraine is headed by a well-known scientist, public figure, statesman, diplomat - Serhiy Vasyliovych Komisarenko - director of the Institute of Biochemistry named after O. V. Palladina of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, member of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, member of the National Academy of Medical Sciences of Ukraine, doctor of biological sciences, professor, state and public figure.