Abu Dhabi: Mubadala Investment Company, one of the main sponsors of the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 is making sure that the event, which runs from March 14 to 21 in the capital with the participation of thousands of athletes from across the world a big success.
“Abu Dhabi has been establishing itself as an emirate with great infrastructure for hosting major sporting events. We’ve seen so many of them in the last few years. But hosting the global games, the largest special Olympics ever with over 190 countries and 7,500 athletes is important for us,” said Homaid Al Shimmari, Deputy Group CEO and Chief Corporate & Human Capital Officer, Mubadala, speaking to Gulf News in an exclusive interview.
“It adds to social conscious that Abu Dhabi is trying to push into the UAE, into the region and also globally that these special individuals are very determined and they are integral part of the society and it is our responsibility to make sure that we give them all the support they need to succeed in sport and in life.”
Mubadala has been working hard with the Special Olympics committee to make the event a success and also created a volunteer programme to allow the company employees to take four days’ time off to volunteer during the eight-day event, he said.
The Abu Dhabi based firm with a portfolio of $225 billion with investments in various sectors is also sponsoring the Brazilian team.
“A few weeks ago, we got a communique from our embassy in Brazil that Brazilian team lost their sponsor and cannot join the Special Olympics in Abu Dhabi despite their planning and handwork, so we decided to sponsor them.”
“It is definitely an opportunity for us and cannot allow these athletes to not participate. We will sponsor the team to come here and participate including all payers, the staff, trainers and some of the family members.”
The Brazilian team has 51 members including 25 athletes and other members.
Mubadala, in partnership with the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) of Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 also launched a short film titled ‘DetermiNATION’ to celebrate people of determination and the UAE’s Special Olympics athletes by exploring their challenges and achievements.
The short film focuses on the personal stories of people of determination, aiming to encourage volunteer work and community initiatives that have an impact during and after the Games.
“We are very proud of this video. It is important for everyone to understand this is the year of tolerance and they are an important members of our society. All we have to do is give them a chance to succeed.”
“This is not Olympics alone, even beyond that there are great achievements on the ground but there are still lot of things to do and as a society we need to keep paying attention to this point and pushing the agenda to make sure that we have a full inclusive society.”