Greek Volunteers Set An Example For Their Nation

The Special Olympics World Summer Games cranks into life this Saturday with thousands of athletes with learning difficulties from every corner of the planet competing for glory in the home of the modern Olympic movement.

Of the 22 sports that make up the Athens Special Olympics none would take place without the monumental efforts of thousands of volunteers drafted in from every part of Greece.

These folks embody everything good about global sporting competition. As part of the GB squad I’ve seen with my own eyes and heard with my own ears exactly what contribution they make with their unceasing commitment and desire to engage with people that might normally struggle to be heard and seen.

The bright and breezy shirts mark them out as do their smiles. They’ve chosen to get involved in the biggest sporting event in the world this year and they will all be rewarded with memories and friendships that will almost certainly last a lifetime.

From organising logistics to simple, basic but much needed team liaison these volunteers are as critical to the success of this ten day sporting feast as the athletes themselves and every one of the hundreds of medal ceremonies that will take place between June 25th and July 4th will represent a podium finish for their efforts.

Take Mel for instance. This ebullient Skiathos girl works in tourism on the island and is one of many volunteers across this idyllic Aegean slice of heaven. She volunteered to take part about 12 months ago and her enthusiasm and desire to engage with the small party of athletes in her charge was a joy to experience. This is whatGreeceneeds to seize in order to get through the current tough times.

It’s true to say that the Greeks have far more to worry about at this moment in time. The precarious financial state of their nation only increases the day to day pressures but for the duration of the Special Olympics they have opted to concern themselves with acts of selfless commitment that suggests their nation will soon return to prosperity.

Hats off to all those who’ve decided to give their time free of charge to this most noble of ventures!

To follow the GB team visit or Twitter @SOGreatBritain / @getpromotionpr

Written on Thursday, 23 June 2011 09:50 by Administrator

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