Special Olympics Saudi Arabia under starter’s orders in Jeddah

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RIYADH: Special Olympics Saudi Arabia will hold athletic competitions in Jeddah with the participation of nine athletic sports, bocce, and weightlifting clubs.

More than 90 male and female players will compete in the events taking place at the King Abdullah Sports City on Nov. 11 and 12.

Participants accompanied by up to 27 coaches are expected from Makkah, Taif, Asir, Tabuk, and Al-Baha as well as from Jeddah’s Special Needs Club, Help Center, Dirat Ajdadi club, and Ma’an Center.

Competitions will be graded according to gender, age, and capabilities to ensure fair contests.

The Olympics will take place in the presence and under the supervision of Maha bint Ahmed Al-Juffali, president of the Saudi Special Olympics Federation, and will include 50-, 100-, 200-, and 400-meter races, softball throw, long jump, weightlifting, and bocce ball, an Italian game played individually as well as in teams.

The federation aims to encourage people with intellectual disabilities to break barriers, fight stereotypes, and develop friendships. It also helps acknowledge their efforts and highlights their accomplishments.