|London 2012 Olympic Stadium|
“In 100 days, the Paralympic Games will come to the United Kingdom for the first time since its origins were founded in Britain in the 1948 Stoke Mandeville hospital games,” the
Foreign office said in a May 21 statement. “From this humble beginning as a sporting event to help the rehabilitation of war veterans with spinal injuries, the Paralympic movement has grown phenomenally.”
In 2012 almost 4,200 athletes will compete in 20 sports over 11 days in London and the Foreign Office said Britain is expecting two million people to come to watch the events.
They also expect inspiring performances from some of the world’s greatest athletes. The London 2012 Paralympic Games is an opportunity to change attitudes to disability and help build a more inclusive society.
Foreign Office Minister for the Olympics and Paralympics, Jeremy Browne, hopes an important message will be sent around the world about how the Games inspire people to achieve their potential, and in many cases, to overcome adversity.
“British embassies and high commissions around the world are celebrating the 100 days to go milestone,” Browne explains.
In Botswana, the high commission has organised a 50km cycle race and a 100 metre race, which will bring together Paralympians and rural communities.
In Bosnia and Herzegovina, an embassy team will challenge the national Paralympic Sitting Volleyball Team to a match and debate disability issues with students at the Sarajevo University.
In the Philippines, the embassy has launched a photography competition on the theme “I Can”, which will feature people of all abilities taking part in sport and demonstrate that disability need not be a barrier.
By Modou S. Joof
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