Special Olympics Bharat may benefit from sports partnership between Walt Disney, ESPN [Asian News International]
(Asian News International Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) New Delhi, Sept 7 (ANI): The Walt Disney Company, ESPN and Special Olympics today announced a two-year global initiative that will leverage the power of sports to promote an environment of social inclusion and acceptance, by uniting people with and without intellectual disabilities through the Special Olympics Unified Sports program, and Special Olympics Bharat is also expected to benefit.
With a multi-million dollar financial and in-kind investment, Disney and ESPN will support Special Olympics' goal of registering one million Unified Sports participants, including athletes (individuals with intellectual disabilities), teammates (individuals without intellectual disabilities) and coaches, by 2015.
The new collaboration, announced by John Skipper, ESPN President, and Timothy P. Shriver, Special Olympics CEO and Chairman, expands on Disney's and ESPN's 30-year commitment to Special Olympics.
A portion of the new funds will be directed to Special Olympics Programs around the world to help grow Unified Sports initiatives, as well as to enhance Special Olympics Unified Sports branding and marketing initiatives to increase awareness of the program.
Eight target growth markets have been identified, including four domestic (Connecticut, central Florida, southern California/greater Los Angeles and Seattle) and four global (Argentina, Brazil, India and Mexico).
ESPN will also help Special Olympics develop and strengthen the Unified Sports global brand through marketing assistance, target-market research and in-kind ads and public service announcements across ESPN platforms.
Additionally, The Walt Disney Company and ESPN have become the global presenting sponsors and official media sponsors of Special Olympics Unified Sports, and will lend their branding to Unified Sports events in the eight target markets.
John Skipper, ESPN President, Co-Chairman of Disney Media Networks: "We're proud to play a leading role in this global initiative to encourage social inclusion through sports. We're inspired by the tremendous work done all over the world by Special Olympics through Unified Sports. Inclusion and acceptance are values that our company stands for and I know our employees will passionately support this wonderful effort."
Disney, ESPN and Special Olympics Unified Sports(r) In India
As part of the collaboration with ESPN in support of Special Olympics Unified Sports, Special Olympics Bharat will receive grant money to increase Unified Sports participation and impact for athletes, teammates and coaches.
At present, Special Olympics Bharat annually delivers 'Recreation Camps' to encourage athletes with intellectual disabilities and their unified teammates to engage in Unified Sports. The program currently works with 51,426 Unified athletes and teammates across 35 states and union territories in India.
With these new funds from ESPN, Special Olympics Bharat will increase the number of athletes and partners through these camps and increase the level of training for its coaches to deliver Unified Sports at each of these events.
The grant funding made possible by ESPN's global collaboration will enable Special Olympics Bharat to run 700 Recreational Camps in all 35 states and union territories, train 2,200 coaches to deliver Unified Sports to 30,000 Athletes and 30,000 teammates in a number of different sports, including: Athletics, Aquatics, Bocce, Badminton, Basketball, Cricket, Football, Roller Skating, Softball, KhoKho, Team Handball, Kabaddi, Volleyball, Floor Hockey and Table Tennis. (ANI)
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