February 28, 2023, Manila – Special Olympics Pilipinas recently held a candle lit dinner at the Manila Polo Club to raise funds for the upcoming 2023 Berlin Special Olympics World Games and SOP programs. The special night with Special Olympics Pilipinas gathered notable members and achievers within the organization to show the power of numbers…
February 28, 2023, Manila – Special Olympics Pilipinas recently held a candle lit dinner at the Manila Polo Club to raise funds for the upcoming 2023 Berlin Special Olympics World Games and SOP programs. The special night with Special Olympics Pilipinas gathered notable members and achievers within the organization to show the power of numbers and volunteerism in empowering athletes with intellectual disabilities.
Reminiscing a spectacular event
Here are the highlights of the event.
A Mother starts the night
Akiko Thomson Guevera, chairman of Pilipinas Special Olympics Inc. and decorated athlete, but foremost a mother to Sachiko who has Down Syndrome, gave the opening speech where she talked about her hopes for an inclusive society that is more accepting of people like her daughter. As someone who has been promoting sports her whole life, she gained a different perspective on the state of opportunities available to members of the community like Sachiko. Because of this, she encourages everyone to imagine a better world that is considerate of those who have an intellectual disability in the Philippines, not only in schools and workplaces but society in general.
Serenading & the audience
The night was also made spectacular by special performances from some of the members. Board member Alex Soriano, who’s also a SO Pilipinas Coach and Athlete, serenaded everyone with his acoustic guitar performance.
Kamille Tingzon, one of the athletes attending the World Games, gave a joyful dance performance that had the whole room joining her in her dance number.
A food for thought
Philippine representatives to the movement’s regional and international Athlete Leadership teams also shared their thoughts during the night. Dacki an adviser, Special Olympics Asia Pacific Regional Athlete Input Council shared how sports helped build his character and gave him confidence to thrive in the real world–telling stories about his work and dating life to show guests that intellectual disabilities do not hinder him from living a full life. Brina Maxino, Special Olympics Sargent Shriver International Global Messenger, was also there to share how being a part of SOP and an athlete leader gives her the chance to change perceptions about people with intellectual disabilities and turn negative perceptions into positive attitudes. She also shared her story and how she graduated college and have started working for herself and family.
To cap off the night, Atty. Nedo Sasing, Vice President for Legal Corporate Administration of BAVI, shared the story of Henry, an SOP member and one of their best employees. According to Atty. Sasing, Henry adds value to the company by setting a good example for others when it comes to work ethics.
The night truly showed the potential and promise of a world where people with intellectual disabilities can thrive and lead fulfilling lives with the help of an inclusive support system and community.
Saying farewell and see you again
The special night with Special Olympics Pilipinas ended with Program Director Kaye Samson and other athletes of the organization going on stage to give the pledge of inclusion. The group will be the official delegates of the organization to the Berlin Special Olympics World Games this year.
- Head Coach (Hc): Gemma Lyn Viduya
- Asst. Coach (Ac): Christian Doroin
- Noel Celwyn Cartera
- Princess Feliz Garcia
- Head Coach (Hc): Darwin Engracia (Sports Specialist)
- Asst. Coach (Ac): Joan Badiango
- Marco Gaite
- Flordeliza Baento
- Head Coach (Hc): Ethel Tan
- Asst. Coach (Ac): Alexander David Soriano
- Robin Andrew Conanan
- Kamille Therese Tingzon
- Jo-Fhrey Parcarey
- Cristine Guimbaolibot
D. Medical Staff
- Dianne Marie De Jesus, MD
Empowering our special friends and family
SO Pilipinas works towards creating a more inclusive society for people with intellectual disabilities through sport. From sporting events to Zumba dance sessions, PWIDs have the opportunity to have fun, stay fit, and learn life skills.
Help us further our mission of better social inclusion for athletes with intellectual disabilities by donating to our cause and supporting our athletes during the World Games. You can also volunteer for the organization by clicking on this link now.