Before focussing on the Special Olympics World Games, it is time to take a look at the approaching National Games Berlin 2022 as well as at the current status of preparations behind the scenes of the organizing committee.
The week from 26 to 29 April was all about the National Games #Berlin2022 and the World Games #Berlin2023. Here is an overview of what was going on during the four days:
We welcomed two high-profile guests with Timothy Shriver (President of Special Olympics International and son of Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver) and Ian Harper (Sargent Shriver International Global Messenger and former Special Olympics athlete).
Attending numerous politically relevant appointments such as the Parliamentary Evening of the Berlin Senate or the Ambassadors' Reception, the two also found the time to get to know the staff of the Local Organizing Committee (LOC).
And not only that: Arthur Hackenthal, LOC staff member and activist, had the opportunity to conduct an exciting interview with both of them. Watch for more on our social media channels soon.
Press conference in Rudolf-Harbig-Halle
On 28 April, a big press conference with many media representatives took place in the Rudolf-Harbig-Halle in Berlin's Olympic Park. In June 2022, the boccia competitions of the National Games will be held here.
In addition to Timothy Shriver, Christiane Krajewski (President Special Olympics Germany), Iris Spranger (Senator for the Interior and Sport Berlin) and Sven Albrecht (CEO of the LOC) were also on site. The press conference was moderated by Daniela Ulbing.
But since our intention is to create an event "by athletes, for athletes", the focus was on once again on them. We were especially happy about the participation of our faces of the games Robert Herberg and Lilly Binder as well as our athlete spokesperson and LOC staff member Dennis Mellentin. In addition, athletes from the LWB Lichtenberger Werkstatt, the VfJ Werkstätten and the Häusler-Schule also gave an impression of their sports.
"Come along, everyone, and see what we can do - and join in!" invites cyclist Robert Herberg. Lilly Binder, active in the athletics relay as a Unified partner, joins in: "That's right, try it out, be there and have fun!"
At the end, all participating media representatives were able to ask their open questions about the upcoming event before saying goodbye well informed, inspired and full of anticipation.
Meeting of the World Games Committee
At the end of the week, also on 28 April, the 6th meeting of the World Games Committee took place. Here all participants were updated both from the perspective of the international federation by Timothy Shriver and from the LOC perspective.
We were pleased to welcome Katarina Witt (former Olympic figure skater and chairwoman of the Katarina-Witt-Foundation), Juliane Seifert (State Secretary in the Federal Ministry of the Interior and for Home Affairs) and Frank Ullrich (Chairman of the Sports Committee of the Bundestag), among others.
The World Games Committee is the advisory body of the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 with more than 30 members from sports, politics and society.
While the anticipation for the Special Olympics World Games in 2023 is already high, we cannot wait for the National Games to give us a first impression of what the host city Berlin is like celebrating a big party of inclusion together.
All information about the Special Olympics National Games can be found here.