Sport

Special Olympians to benefit from 2017 Digicel 5K

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

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Beyond running a personal best time or getting painted in the 'Fun Zone', participants in the 2017 Digicel 5K will also be making a big investment in Special Olympics Jamaica (SOJ).

The sporting organisation stands to benefit once again from a share of the contribution for the annual race. Last year, the SOJ invested its share into several development programmes, including the Digicel NBA Jumpstart Basketball Camp at G C Foster College in August. It helped to prepare 60 boys and girls for the 2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The athletes' performances have resulted in their growing confidence in several sporting arenas. Through funds received from the 2016 Digicel Foundation 5K, SOJ sent 25 athletes to the World Winter Games in Austria in March this year. They won three gold medals, one silver, and one bronze — Jamaica's biggest medal haul at the Winter Games.

SOJ's hectic year is not over yet. From November 3-4, the sporting body will conduct training and screening of 60 under-12 athletes from Manchester and St Elizabeth at Treasure Beach Sports Park. The Special Olympics' unified and under-15 teams will also compete in the annual football competition.

“We are so thankful to Digicel Foundation,” said Lorna Bell, executive director of SOJ.

“If we never had the support with funds from the 5K run, our athletes would not have been able to achieve so much.” The Digicel Foundation will be hosting its sixth annual run on Saturday in downtown Kingston. Persons can sign up at runningeventsja.com.

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