CBMI Canada

President of CBM Prof. Allen Foster Says "The Olympics Will Offer Tremendous Help in Raising Awareness About Poverty"

    Toronto (ots/PRNewswire) - "The Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics promises to be an historic event for the world of sports and for people worldwide," says Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's Special Adviser on Sport for Development and Peace.

    Adolf Ogi has scheduled a meeting with Liu Qi, President of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad.

    "The United Nations is increasingly cooperating with the International Olympic Committee on development and peace-building activities," says Mr. Ogi.  "And the Beijing Olympics is a tremendous opportunity as well as a great responsibility."

    The UN is increasingly seeking opportunities to use sport to improve education and health, expand economic opportunities and bolster peace. The goal is to hasten the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals, which targets tackling hunger, poverty and other social issues by 2015.

    China is also hosting this year's Special Olympics World Summer Games in Shanghai and the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing.

    UN agencies are already involved in schemes for next year's Olympic Games.

    UN Volunteers is coordinating with the Beijing Committee to mobilize 70,000 volunteers for the 2008 Olympic Games and 30,000 for the Paralympics.

    The UN Children's Fund is organizing, with the Beijing Committee, a "Youth Camps" project to bring together 800 youth between the ages of 16 and 18 who represent all International Olympic Committee member countries and regions, including 50 living with disabilities.

    President of CBM Prof. Allen Foster stated, "The Olympics will offer tremendous help in raising awareness about poverty."

    According to the World Health Organization, approximately 600 million people worldwide live with disabilities of various types, and the number is increasing due to illness, trauma and lack of essential medical services. Of this total, 80% live in low-income countries; most are poor and have limited or no access to basic services, including rehabilitation facilities.

    CBM is the leading organisation providing services for people with disability in low income countries of the world and promoting the rights of people with disability.

    CBM is advocating for the mainstreaming of disability issues into development policies of Governments and other world bodies.

    CBM's primary purpose is to improve the quality of life of the world's poorest persons with disabilities and those at risk of disability, who live  in the most disadvantaged societies.

ots Originaltext: CBMI Canada
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