2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
15th Special Olympics World Summer Games
الألعاب الصيفية العالمية الخامسة عشرة للأولمبياد الخاص
2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games logo.svg
Host cityAbu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
MottoMeet the Determined
(Arabic: تلبية العزم)
Nations participating190
Athletes participating7,500
Events22 Sports
Opening ceremonyMarch 14
Closing ceremonyMarch 21
Officially opened byMohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Main venueZayed Sports City Stadium
WebsiteOfficial website

The 2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games (Arabic: 2019 الألعاب الأولمبية الصيفية الخاصة بألعاب العالم الصيفية, 2019 al'aleab al'uwlimbiat alsayfiat alkhasat bi'aleab alealam alsayfia) were a special olympics multi-sport event for athletes with intellectual disabilities in the tradition of the Special Olympics movement. It was held in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates from March 14–21, 2019.[1] ESPN offered international coverage of the games.[2]

The 2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games was the first Special Olympics games to take place in the Middle East, were also the first to be held in winter/autumn in the host city and the largest sports and humanitarian event recorded, featuring 200 National Programs, more than 7,000 athletes and 20,000 registered volunteers.[3] Since 2017 and following its national policy, the United Arab Emirates coined the term "determination" instead of "disability", referring to disabled people as "People of Determination".[3]

Host selection[edit]

Three finalists were chosen from the countries which had submitted bids to host the games: Australia, Germany (which was chosen latter to host the 2023 Games), and South Africa.[4] However, all three countries had withdrawn their bids by April 2015.

In November 2016,it was announced that the Emirate of Abu Dhabi would host the 2019 Summer Games. This was the first time that the Special Olympics were to be held in the Middle East / North Africa Region. Due to the region's extreme climate, the games were held during the local late winter/early spring season for the first time, from March 14–21, 2019.[5]

Opening Ceremony[edit]

The opening ceremony of the 2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Abu Dhabi.

It was held at Zayed Sports City Stadium which also held the FIFA Club World Cup in 2017 and 2018 and the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.The headliners of the ceremonies included Avril Lavigne, Hussain Al Jassmi, Assala Nasri, Tamer Hosny, Paul Oakenfold, Sumi Jo, Now United, and Luis Fonsi.

Closing Ceremony[edit]

The closing ceremony took place on 21 March 2019 at the Zayed Sports City Stadium where the Special Olympics flag was handed over from Abu Dhabi to Jämtland County, Sweden as the hosts of the 2021 Special Olympics World Winter Games. The headliners of the ceremonies were Nicole Scherzinger, Keala Settle, Now United, Hamad Al Ameri, Rashed Al Majed and Waleed Al Shami. Before the ceremonies the music video of the game's theme song "Right Where I'm Supposed To Be" by Ryan Tedder, Avril Lavigne, Luis Fonsi, Hussain Al Jassmi, Assala Nasri and Tamer Hosny was premiered.


Events were held at nine venues across two emirates:[6]

Abu Dhabi[edit]




  1. Athletics
  2. Badminton
  3. Basketball
  4. Beach Volleyball
  5. Bocce
  6. Bowling
  7. Cycling
  8. Equestrian
  9. Football
  10. Golf
  11. Gymnastics (artistic)
  12. Gymnastics (rhythmic)
  13. Handball
  14. Judo
  15. Kayaking
  16. Open Water Swimming
  17. Powerlifting
  18. Roller Skating
  19. Sailing
  20. Swimming
  21. Table Tennis
  22. Tennis
  23. Volleyball

Participating nations[edit]

Delegations to the 2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games[7][failed verification]


Logo and branding[edit]

The logo was unveiled on March 25, 2017 during the handover at the closing ceremony of the 2017 Special Olympics World Winter Games in Graz, Austria. The logo was projected on the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. The logo was inspired by palm fronds woven together in an eastern Arabian cultural technique known in Gulf Arabic as khoos (Arabic: خوص), with the Special Olympics symbol in a red circle in the middle.[11]



Presenting Partner[edit]

Official Partners[edit]

Official Sponsors[edit]

Official Suppliers[edit]

Official Supporters[edit]

Host, Broadcast, Media, Government and Venue Partners and Supporters[edit]


  1. ^ Staff Report (16 November 2016). "Abu Dhabi to host 2019 Special Olympic World Games".
  2. ^ Couch, Teri (2019-03-18). "Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019: Monday, March 18". ESPN MediaZone U.S. Retrieved 2019-03-19.
  3. ^ a b Jerusalem Post (9 March 2019). "United Arab Emirates to be First in Middle East to Host Special Olympics".
  4. ^ "2019 Special Olympics World Games Finalists Announced". Special Olympics (specialolympics.org). Retrieved 14 February 2013.
  5. ^ "World Games in MENA for the First Time". specialolympics.org.
  6. ^ "Venues". English. Retrieved 2019-03-13.
  7. ^ "Delegations". 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games. 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games Organizing Committee. Archived from the original on 2015-07-24. Retrieved 22 July 2015.
  8. ^ "Special Olympics Bharat".
  9. ^ "Special Olympics Republic of the Congo Brazzaville".
  10. ^ "Special Olympics Sri Lanka".
  11. ^ "Abu Dhabi Launches Countdown to Special Olympics World Games 2019". broadwayworld.com. 27 March 2017. Archived from the original on 20 July 2017. Retrieved 23 July 2017.
  12. ^ "Sponsors".

External links[edit]

Preceded by Special Olympics World Summer Games Succeeded by