Just sharing the special Olympics of Barbados views on their inaugural event.
Here is a link to the full article, multimedia coverage and more information about this movement – The Inaugural Special Olympics 5K Run and Walk
Related article: A Special 5km
Josiah Oein and Rachel Atkinson Win the
Special Olympics 5K Run Fundraiser
On a bright and sunny afternoon, Barbados runners took to the streets of historic Bridgetown to show their support for the athletes of Special Olympics. The Inaugural Special Olympics 5K Run and Walk, under the expert guidance of June Rudder of Elite Sports, was an event to help raise funds to send 26 Barbados athletes to the Special Olympics World Games, to be held in Los Angeles, California from July 25 through August 2.
First to cross the finish line at the Bay Street Esplanade, nearly one minute ahead of the rest of the field was Josiah Oein in a blistering time of 17:03.8. For his efforts, Mr. Oein was presented with a Nokia Lumina 630 phone, compliments of Digicel. The top finishing Special Olympics male athletes were Raymond Delphi, Tyson Browne, Akitunde’ Hall and Korey Kellman, all of whom are members of the Special Olympics Barbados track and field team, which will compete in the Los Angeles World Games.
Fast runs were the order of the day as Rachel Atkinson captured the female title. Crossing the finish line more than two minutes ahead of her closest opponent, she won an Alcatel Poc C5 phone, also compliments of Digicel. Sean Cooke topped a field of three to place first in the wheelchair division. A big prize of the day, which was won by runner Don Gittens in a post-race raffle, was a staycation for two, donated by the Radisson Aquatica Resort. All runners and walkers received Special Olympics Medals.
Striding to victory in the walk phase of the Inaugural Special Olympics 5K Run and Walk were Dudley Harewood in the male division and Charmaine Seale in the female division. Among the Special Olympics athletes competing in the walk and headed for the World Games were Nikita Maycock, Rosie Murray, Patrick Hinds, Tiffany Branch, Shanara Cain, Desiree Hinds, Leander Brathwaite and Felicia McLennan, along with Special Olympics Unified Partners Nadia McLennan and Rico Wiggins.
Special Olympics Unified Partners are participants, who do not have intellectual disabilities, and they compete alongside Special Olympics athletes, who have intellectual challenges. Both Nadia McLennan and Rico Williams will travel to Los Angeles to compete in bocce, teamed up with athletes Felicia McLennan (Nadia’s daughter) and Patrick Hinds. The field of runners and walkers also included a number of Special Olympics athletes, who take part in the organisation’s various sports programmes and Special Olympics Barbados Chairman, Donna King-Brathwaite. Mrs. King-Brathwaite says she is looking forward to the 5K Run and Walk becoming an annual fundraising event on the organisation’s calendar.
Runners and athletes, who would like to see themselves in action in the Inaugural Special Olympics 5K Run and Walk, can visit the Special Olympics website, http://www.specialolympicsbarbados.org, to view a photo album of the event.
The drive to help fund the 4,000 mile trip to Los Angeles and the on-going programmes of Special Olympics continues this Saturday, July 11, when JoJo’s in the Carlton Plaza in Black Rock will host a Games Evening. The fun event, which will begin at 2:00 pm and run “until”, will feature road tennis, bingo, darts, draughts and chess.
The 2015 Los Angeles Special Olympics World Games will draw 7,000 intellectually challenged athletes and 3,000 coaches from 177 countries. The Special Olympics World Games are held every four years, and in 2011, in a drive spearheaded by Digicel, Barbados sent 7 athletes to the World Games in Athens, Greece, and all 7 of the athletes returned home with gold, silver or bronze medals. This year, there is a goal of sending a much larger team of 26 athletes to the Los Angeles World Games. Digicel has again stepped forward by providing financial support and by establishing the “Digicel Road to the World Games Fund.” Those wishing to help a full team of Barbados athletes compete in the Special Olympics World Games can do so by contributing to the fund at CIBC First Caribbean International Bank, account number 1001111009.