Three athletes from the Foundation reach the Special Olympics podium
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- India selected three athletes from the Vicente Ferrer Foundation to participate in the Special Olympics Games 2014 in Barcelona
- Players conquered the podium with gold, silver and bronze medals in badminton
The Special Olympic Games Barcelona 2014, an international sporting event that brings together people with intellectual disabilities in order to promote sport, leisure and solidarity among the disabled community and provide a means of personal development and social integration, were held in Calella (Barcelona) on the dates of October 30 and November 2.
Balakrishna, Chandrasekhar and Naresh, all of them athletes from the preparation Academy for the Vicente Ferrer Foundation (VFF) Special Olympics, represented India in the discipline of badminton and won the top three positions, getting the gold, silver and bronze medals respectively.
They are three boys from Andhra Pradesh, somewhat introverted and with a cheerful smile, who after going to schools for the disabled were selected for the Foundation's preparation academy given their motor potential and excellent skills shown on hitting games. Chandrasekhar and Balakrishna had already participated in other international competitions such as the Special Olympics Games 2014 Asia-Pacific wining multiple medals both in single and double matches. However, Naresh is being competing for only three months and it is the first time he participates in an international competition of this level.
The boys describe their triumph and trip to Spain with great happiness: "We are very pleased for having the opportunity to visit Barcelona; everyone has been very good to us. Thanks to the work of the past few months, we were very confident in ourselves and we won three medals."
In 2010, the Foundation began implementing a physical training program in all sites for disabled people. The initiative aims to promote the physical, mental, emotional and social development of young people in order to facilitate their integration and social recognition through sport in a society that stigmatizes and discriminates against the disabled community.
Through this program they are provided with accommodation, physical training, education and professional training to enhance their autonomy. Their coaches also motivate them to compete both statewide in Andhra Pradesh and nationally, where the India national team to participate in the Special Olympics is formed.
The Foundation is becoming one of the most important sports centers for people with disabilities in the country. 14 of the 34 athletes of the organization participating in this project have been selected for the Special Olympics in Los Angeles to be held between June and July 2015.