January 5, 2005: Headlines: Directors - Shriver: Special Olympics: NGO's: Service: Tsunami: Special Olympics: Timothy Shriver announces "Rebuild Hope Fund" for Special Olympics Programs affected by tsunami

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Thailand: Special Report: 2004 - Tsunami hits Southeast Asia: January 5, 2005: Headlines: Directors - Shriver: Special Olympics: NGO's: Service: Tsunami: Special Olympics: Timothy Shriver announces "Rebuild Hope Fund" for Special Olympics Programs affected by tsunami

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Timothy Shriver announces "Rebuild Hope Fund" for Special Olympics Programs affected by tsunami

Timothy Shriver announces Rebuild Hope Fund for Special Olympics Programs affected by tsunami

Timothy Shriver announces "Rebuild Hope Fund" for Special Olympics Programs affected by tsunami

Rebuild Hope fund for Special Olympics Programs affected by tsunami

5 January 2005

The scope of the tragedy resulting from the recent tsunami in the Indian Ocean is impossible to truly comprehend, especially with the known loss of life increasing daily. Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of those countries directly impacted by this event.

We have received many inquiries about the status of our Special Olympics family members in the affected areas. Most of those countries have active Special Olympics Programs and, in recent years, our leaders there have been working to grow and further strengthen the movement as part of our global campaign. As of today, we are aware of the possible loss of only one Special Olympics Athlete, Ms. Malathy Joseph, who won a silver medal in basketball at the 2003 World Summer Games in Dublin, Ireland. She and her mother remain on the missing list from Chennai (Tamil Nadu State), India. Both of them and their family are in our prayers.

Of course the most urgent need for these countries is for humanitarian aid, and there are other organizations that are providing that support. Nonetheless, many members of our Special Olympics family in these areas are struggling now and will continue to struggle to sustain their work on behalf of our athletes, families and volunteers. Since our athletes are frequently the most neglected population during times of crisis, it is critical that we do whatever we can to help ensure the continued benefits that Special Olympics offers through sports training and competition. Just as importantly, it is critical that we help sustain the belief that hope and joy can and will, somehow, be restored. In some ways, in times of crisis, the example of our athletes is all the more important.

In response, we have decided to focus our efforts on supporting the rebuilding and future stability of the Special Olympics Programs in the aftermath of this devastating disaster. Many have already offered to help, so for them and for others we are creating the Special Olympics Rebuild Hope fund. The Fund will work to ensure that Special Olympics Programs survive in these devastated countries survive so that they can continue to provide the joy and acceptance of Special Olympics sport. In other times of disaster, Special Olympics has not invited contributions to devastated areas but, sadly, our Programs have suffered tremendously in those situations. This time, we will do our best to be helpful. After all, we cling to the belief that in many situations, Special Olympics is the only hope for self-respect and inclusion for people with intellectual disabilities. And we hold on to this belief, now more than ever.

If you wish to support Special Olympics athletes in these countries, please make a secure online donation, or mail your contribution, marked Special Olympics Rebuild Hope, to Special Olympics at the address below. All funds received will be designated for the Programs in the region most in need.

As always, I send you the thanks of everyone in our movement for all you do every day to keep the spirit of Special Olympics alive and growing. Please forward this e-mail to your friends, family and colleagues who may be able to help


 Timothy Shriver

Timothy Shriver
Chairman and CEO
Special Olympics, Inc.
1133 19th St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20036-3104
+1 (202) 628-3630
+1 (800) 700-8585
Fax: +1 (202) 824-0200

When this story was posted in January 2005, this was on the front page of PCOL:

Peace Corps issues appeal to Thailand RPCVs Date: December 30 2004 No: 354 Peace Corps issues appeal to Thailand RPCVs
Peace Corps is currently assessing the situation in Thailand, anticipates a need for volunteers and is making an appeal to all Thailand RPCV's to consider serving again through the Crisis Corps. Also read this message and this message from RPCVs in Thailand. All PCVs serving in Thailand are safe. Latest: Sri Lanka RPCVs, click here for info.

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Story Source: Special Olympics

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; Directors - Shriver; Special Olympics; NGO's; Service; Tsunami



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