Forum in Doha Focused on Sport for Persons with a Disability

The city of Doha (Qatar) recently hosted the third Annual International Forum on Children with Special Needs. 22 Apr 2008 By IPC

Under the patronage of HH Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser Al Missned, the three-day event brought together advocates, family members, scholars and practitioners from a variety of areas to explore the theme of sport and ability and discuss how sport can change the lives of persons with a disability.

The forum focused on discussions and demonstrations of how sport, recreation and cultural activities promote global unity, social inclusion, acceptance, skill acquisition and friendship.

The forum was organized by the Shafallah Centre and included special guests such as International Paralympic Committee (IPC) President Sir Philip Craven, British Paralympian Ade Adepitan, Cherie Blair, wife of former British Premier Tony Blair and Deborah Johnson, Paralympic Gold medallist.

Sir Philip emphasized the importance of having children attend the Paralympic Games and the domino effect it has on the rest of society. “When young school children visit the Paralympic Games they get a positive and totally natural experience that Paralympic athletes are athletes and are people like themselves,” he said.

Cherie Blair was adamant about her devotion to the movement, emphasizing the element and idea of fair play. A leading human rights lawyer, she referred to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which discusses participation in sports, cultural and recreational activities by all.

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