The SENESE Special Olympics athletes and officials after last weeks celebrations
APIA: TUESDAY 25 AUGUST 2015: The SENESE family came together last Friday afternoon, to hail the achievements of three of its student athletes, who participated in the latest Special Olympics Games in Los Angeles, and came away with five medals.
The athletes from SENESE were part of the Samoan delegation of 18 Special Olympics Athletes and officials who participated in the games late last month and earlier this month, collecting a total of 14 medals including 5 gold medals.
SENESE athletes won a total of 5 medals for Samoa in their respective sports.
Sili Ah Ching won two gold medals (100 metres and long jump), Seinafo Mavaega won gold in the 200 metres, Brett Oloapu won Bronze in the 100 metres while Haydee Jordan’s team won Bronze in soccer.
The board and staff of SENESE wanted the opportunity to congratulate the medallists, for their determination and hard-work, through a small thanksgiving service and lunch.
Chairman of the board Mrs Fu’a Hazelman congratulated the athletes, and their families, as well as the Special Olympics officials who accompanied the athletes so far away from home.
She also reminded the athletes that the sky is the limit, with what they can achieve, and that they should continue to value their ability and not their disability.
The same sentiments were echoed by Mrs Marie Bentin Toalepaialii, the director for SENESE Inclusive Support Services, who said that she and the entire SENESE family are very proud of not only the SENESE athletes but all the athletes that represented Samoa.
The Reverend Elder, Mafi Oloapu, who is the parent of one of the athletes thank SENESE on behalf of the parents and the athletes, and said that this will be the beginning of more adventures for athletes to explore.
Approximately 6500 athletes from 164 countries participated in the latest Special Olympics Games and this is the first time that Samoa has picked up many gold medals in their chosen sports.