NASSAU, BAHAMAS – With the start of the 2019 Summer Special Olympics Games less than four months away, organizers of Special Olympics Bahamas (SOB) are still looking to corporate Bahamas for additional support in getting team Bahamas to the games next year.
In an interview with Eyewitness Sports, SOB director Gilbert Williams said although they are a long way away from their goal, they are still hoping for the best, which would be the opportunity to field a full team at the event.
The 2019 Summer Special Olympics take place March 14-21 in Abu Dhabi, United Emirates.
“We have to make a deposit for our tickets coming up very soon. However, that part isn’t the issue. The issue we have is not being able to pay off the remaining balance and losing our deposit at the same time,” Williams said.
“We still are about $60-65,000 away from where we need to be. We realize that it is a substantial amount of money, but we are holding on to the hope that we can garner enough support from both corporate Bahamas and private citizens.”
Last weekend, the team held its first group practice, which featured athletes from several islands around the country.
“These athletes are pushing themselves hours at a time, week in and week out,” Williams added. “We have athletes competing in soccer for the first time, track and field, bocce, basketball and swimming, and all of them work very hard. I can assure that they are working to make sure they’re ready if they get the chance to compete next summer.”
Around 7,000 athletes from 170 nations are expected to compete in the week-long event.