Home Culture Santiago, Chile Will Host the 2027 Special Olympics World Games

Santiago, Chile Will Host the 2027 Special Olympics World Games

by PR NewsWire

The world's largest sports and humanitarian event is coming to Chile's capital city. The Special Olympics International Board of Directors announced today that Santiago, Chile will be the host site for the 2027 Special Olympics World Games, marking the first time in the organization's 55-year history that a World Games will take place in the Southern Hemisphere. 

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Special Olympics Board Director and Athlete Leader Emanuelle (Manu) Dutra today announced Santiago, Chile as the host of the 2027 Special Olympics World Games. At partner Organization of American States (OAS) headquarters, Manu was joined by Dr. Timothy Shriver, Chairman, Special Olympics; Secretary General Luis Almagro, OAS; Mr. Jaime Pizarro, Minister of Sport, Chile; Ms. Carolina Picasso, President, Special Olympics Chile; Ms. Claudia Echeverry, Regional Managing President, Special Olympics Latin America; and Mr. Gonzalo Escobar, Athlete Leader, Special Olympics Chile. Source: Special Olympics International

In less than four years, Santiago will welcome more than 6,000 Special Olympics athletes from over 170 nations to compete in 22 Olympic-type sports at Santiago's state-of-the-art competition venues. They will be supported by over 2,000 coaches and thousands of volunteers. The Games will also attract 6,000 family members, more than 2,000 international media, and 500,000 spectators. Home to rich cultural heritage, stunning architecture, and a long tradition of hosting global sporting events, Santiago is expected to leave a legacy of a social transformation for Chile, its people and the Latin American region.

At a press event at the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington, D.C. today, Special Olympics Brazil Athlete Leader and International Board Director Emanuelle Dutra de Souza announced that the Special Olympics 2027 World Games has been awarded to Santiago de Chile. Presiding over the announcement were Special Olympics Chairman Timothy Shriver, OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro, Permanent Representative of Chile to the OAS Sebastián Kraljevich and leader of the Santiago 2027 bid, Chilean Minister of Sport Jaime Pizarro Herrera.

"We are thrilled that our 2027 World Games has been awarded to Chile's capital city – Santiago.  In less than 15 years, our Program in Chile has reduced the fear of difference and worked tirelessly to build systems that advance inclusion in sports, health, and education for one of the world's most marginalized populations," said Dr. Timothy Shriver, Special Olympics Chairman. "Bringing these Games to the region will leave a long-lasting legacy of sport for development."

"We are very happy that our country will be the new host of a top-level global sports event: the Special Olympics 2027 World Games," said Gabriel Boric Font, President of the Republic of Chile. "We are proud to continue promoting inclusion through sports, a new national celebration that continues to pave the way for organizing events of this nature that generate so much unity and joy at the national level. To all the athletes of the Special Olympics World Games: we await you in Chile!"

The Federal Government of Chile and the City of Santiago have committed a budget of approximately US$134 million to plan and deliver the World Games, which contribute to several UN Sustainable Development Goals including No Poverty, Good Health & Well-Being, Quality Education, Gender Equality, Reduced Inequalities, and others.

"The 2027 Special Olympics World Games are already making history, because they are coming to Santiago!" said Emanuelle Dutra de Souza, Special Olympics Brazil athlete in a phone call to Gonzalo Escobar, Athlete Leader, Special Olympics Chile, to deliver the news. "The significant inputs in the bid from Special Olympics Chile athletes showed us that there is a keen understanding of what it means to put inclusion into action."

"The Undersecretary, Antonia Illanes attended the World Games in Berlin last summer and witnessed first-hand the power of inclusion through sport and we knew we must make that change here," said Jaime Pizarro, Minister of Sport, Chile. "This is part of the legacy of the Pan American and Parapan American Games organized by Chile. We have first class infrastructure and have demonstrated to the world our seriousness and capacity to organize international events." 

The original bid was a joint effort led by Special Olympics Chile, supported by the City of Santiago, the President of Chile Gabriel Boric Font; the Minister and Undersecretary of Sport, Jaime Pizarro and Antonia Illanes, respectively; the Governor of Santiago Claudio Orrego; the President of the National Olympic Committee of Chile, Miguel Angel Mujica.

The legacy of the 2027 World Games in Chile includes developing Unified Schools programming in at least 200 municipalities and 1,000 schools; increasing training about people with intellectual disabilities (ID) for law enforcement; improving education of primary healthcare professionals treating people with ID; expansion of Special Olympics Chile into all 16 regions of the country; and a series of actions to mobilize awareness and political commitment throughout Latin America.

The formal World Games agreement will be signed on Friday, 26 April at a meeting in Washington, D.C. of Consejo Americano del Deporte (CADE), the 41-member association of Western Hemisphere sports ministers.

Every two years, thousands of Special Olympics athletes worldwide come together to showcase their athletic skills and celebrate the spirit of Special Olympics, which celebrates over 50,000 games and competitions every year. The first Special Olympics World Games took place in 1968 and since then have evolved into a world-class sporting event. Alternating between Summer Games and Winter Games, Special Olympics World Games bring public attention to the talents and abilities of people with intellectual disabilities, helping to change attitudes and break down stereotypes.

For more information about the 2027 Special Olympics World Games, please visit www.specialolympics.org.

About Special Olympics

Founded in 1968, Special Olympics is a global movement to end discrimination against people with intellectual disabilities. We foster acceptance of all people through the power of sport and programming in education, health and leadership. With nearly four million athletes and Unified Sports® partners and one million coaches and volunteers in more than 170 countries, Special Olympics delivers more than 30 Olympic-type sports and nearly 50,000 games and competitions every year. Engage with us on: XFacebookYouTubeInstagramTikTok, and LinkedIn. Learn more at SpecialOlympics.org.

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