A Special Day for the Special Olympics
27 FEBRUARY 2019

The Lighting Ceremony for the Flame of Hope is a special day for the Summer Special Olympics. It marks the start of the countdown to the official opening of the games on March 14th in Abu Dhabi while celebrating diversity, inclusion, and the strength of will of the Special Olympics athletes.

The ceremony begun on February 27th at the Zappeion Megaron. It was  followed by a torch relay from there to the United Arab Emirates Embassy, with a handoff of the torch taking place in front of the SNF offices.

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) participated in this exciting celebration. The SNF supports the goals and work of Special Olympics International, including with a recent $10 million, three-year grant for the implementation of the “Play Unified – Learn Unified” program. “Play Unified – Learn Unified” implements sports programs in dozens of countries, including Brazil, Kenya, Tanzania, and Indonesia, that encourage equal participation of all young people, with or without mental disabilities, to eliminate prejudice and promote the full integration of people with disabilities into society.

Representatives of the SNF will also travel to Abu Dhabi between March 14th and March 21st to attend the Special Olympics World Games.