SOM champions sports inclusion – Capital Radio Malawi
29 May, 2024

The Special Olympics Malawi (SOM) has expressed satisfaction with the positive impact unified sports are having in promoting inclusion.

Mustafa Moses, the national head of sports at SOM, expressed his satisfaction during the National Unified Sports competition held on Saturday in Lilongwe.

In a celebration of talent, determination and inclusivity, the competition brought together athletes with intellectual disabilities and those without disabilities to complete in a spirited showcase of sportsmanship.

They competed in several unified sports including basketball, badminton, football, bocce, tennis and swimming.

Speaking to journalists, Moses expressed his excitement about the event and emphasized the importance of providing opportunities for athletes to compete and showcase their abilities.

“We are really excited because we wanted our athletes to come together and compete. That is what we do in Special Olympics, we identify, train the athletes and at the end we expose them to competition,” Moses said.

On inclusion, Moses said they will continue promoting unification as this is the right way of encouraging young people with disabilities to play alongside their peers without disabilities.

“Playing together helps them to interact and learn skills from each other. So, unification brings these two groups together,” he added.

Moses further underscored the importance of reaching out to communities and families to promote acceptance and support for individuals with intellectual disabilities.

He emphasized the positive impact of sports participation on the overall development of athletes and urged communities to embrace inclusion.

Despite facing challenges such as equipment shortages and parental denial, coaches and mentors like Mayo Likalowa are committed to supporting athletes and promoting inclusion.

Likalowa, highlighted the role of coaches and mentors in nurturing athletes’ abilities.

“We have been trained and we have experience in terms of how to impart knowledge and skills to young people with intellectual disabilities. We drill these children to prepare them to the world of sports,” Likalowa said.

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