Empowerment through sport

Mandela Day was a celebration of joy in the community. For the second successive year, Aspen Caribbean and Central America (Caricam) positively impacted the lives of more than 80 young athletes, by participating in the annual Costa Rica Special Olympics Organizationi competition.

Aspen arranged sporting activities and spent the day with the children, aged from 5 to 14 and who suffer from intellectual disabilities, together their families. They had immense fun doing what they love most: playing sport.

The team of volunteers led the basketball activities thereby helping to complete the children’s weekly exercise routine. During game time, the Aspen team coaches emphasised values such as teamwork and commitment, and in return learnt a lot from the young athletes in terms of perseverance, following instructions and gratitude. Most importantly, it was a day of fun and an opportunity for Aspen’s employees to experience the immense discipline, courage and strength that these children and their parents have.

(i) Costa Rica Special Olympics is a non-profit organization, dedicated to empower kids with intellectual disabilities, bringing them the opportunity of growing integrally and inclusively in the community they belong to.

The new way for social inclusion is training and competing in unified Sports where athletes with intellectual disabilities and athletes that do not have them work as a team. Each person has a roll to follow up becoming the key for learning and enjoy all together.