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Basketball for everyone

Children with and without disabilities play basketball in the Sports Centre “Moraca” in the capital on the occasion of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities and within the campaign promoting social inclusion of children with disabilities “It’s about ability"

PODGORICA, December 4, 2010 – Within the “It’s about ability” campaign and  on the occasion of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, around 100 children with and without disabilities will play basketball in the Sport Centre “Moraca” in Podgorica from 9.00am to 10.30am on Saturday, December 4. Minister of Labour and Social Welfare Dr. Suad Numanovic, President of Montenegrin Olympic Committee Dusan Simonovic, UNICEF Montenegro Representative Noala Skinner and National Director of Special Olympics Montenegro Dejan Pancic will participate in the press conference at the Sports Centre “Moraca” at 10.00 AM.

The event is organized together with the Special Olympics, an international organization engaging children and adults with intellectual disabilities in sports activites in more than 180 countries worldwide. Every year, on the occasion of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, more than 15,000 people participate in the Special Olympics Europe/Eurasia Basketball Week, which is organized with support from FIBA in countries of Europe and Euroasia. The slogan of this international event is “Basketball for Everyone”.

On Saturday December 4, around 100 children with intellectual disabilities, who are already trained by the Special Olympics Montenegro, will play basketball with children from the primary school „Stampar Makarije“ in the Sports Centre „Moraca“ in Podgorica. Junior basketball players and coaches from the Basketball Club „Junior“ will join them.

The aim is to send the message to the general public that every child has right to sport and that Montenegro’s sports centres are open to all children including children with disabilities.

“Children with disabilities have the same right as others to participate in and enjoy the sports, games, films, arts and other fun activities. So, schools, theatres, museums, playgrounds, beaches, libraries and sports centres should be accessible by everyone without inhibition, including children with disabilities.” says UNICEF Representative Noala Skinner. “Ensuring the full enjoyment of their rights on an equal basis with other children is the responsibility not only of the government, but of every member of society.”     “Special Olympics European Basketball Week is hugely important because sport plays an integral role in society and touches many people in a highly positive and participatory way. Special Olympics through the sport want  to change the lives of people with intellectual disabilities and to promote respect, acceptance and inclusion. If you are a fan of sports that create unity, athletes who inspire, and connections that foster acceptance, then you are already a fan of the Special Olympics movement” says Dejan Pancic, National Director of Special Olympics Montenegro.     The campaign’s key messages – Where many see difficulties, we see opportunities; where many see obstacles, we see friendship; where many see weakness, we see courage; and where many see burden, we see love – have been posted on billboards and city lights all over the country for 3 months in order to stimulate Montenegrin citizens to welcome children with physical and/or learning disabilities into their homes, communities and hearts without fear or prejudice.     For additional information, please contact:

Ms. Jelena Perović
Communication Officer
UNICEF Montenegro
Phone: +382 20 224 277 Ext. 3
Fax: +382 20 224 278
Cell phone: +382 69 225 315



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