Ja short of funds for Special Olympic Games
JAMAICA will send an 18-member team to the 2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games on January 26 to February 6 in Pyeong Chang, South Korea.
Floor hockey, in which they are the defending champions, and figure skating, are the two events Jamaica will be competing in at this 10th staging of the Games.
In order to defend their title, Special Olympics Jamaica has selected Matthew Tarawali, Oshain Daley, Andrew Hinds, Sydney Manyan, Omar Brown, Craig Nelson, Shawn Myers, Jermaine Henry, Dexter Haughton, Jason Grant, Lucan Jones, Andrew Folkes, Leneil Hewitt, Davit Thompson, Dwight Brooks and Ryan Farquharson.
At the last World Winter Games in Boise, Idaho in 2009, Jamaica defeated Canada 8-7 in the floor hockey final.
In figure skating, enduring members Nigel Davis and Tamra Mitchell will compete for a medal dancing on ice.
Thanks to Digicel Jamaica and Caribbean Broilers, the team has been in training since January, but Special Olympics Jamaica says it is still in need of $7 million to ensure that the athletes go to South Korea.
The Special Olympics World Games bring public attention to the talents and capabilities of people with intellectual disabilities, helping to change attitudes and break down barriers that excluded them from the mainstream community.
These Games will be one of the largest winter multi-sport events ever held in South Korea.
Glendon West will serve as Head of Delegation, assisted by Pat Lu Chin and there will be four coaches, Yolanda Reid, Mitchell Romans, Valery Murphy and Jacqueline Bennett, acting as overseers of the athletes. Lu Chin will also serve as the team's physiotherapist.