This summer, 115 athletes with intellectual disabilities from across England, Scotland and Wales will be heading to Los Angeles to take part in the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games. Supporting children and adults with intellectual disabilities, the World Games is the largest sports and humanitarian event on the globe and will see 7,000 athletes from 177 countries take part.
To celebrate, Coca-Cola, a founding partner of Special Olympics, has assembled a star-studded team to record a unified song for the World Games, titled “Reach Up.” The new song debuts this week and will be performed during the World Games.
As well as rock band O.A.R and recording artist Cody Simpson, “Reach Up” also features Breanna Bogucki – a singer and decorated Special Olympics athlete from Illinois who has Autism, and Madison Tevlin - a young Canadian woman with Down’s syndrome who became a viral sensation earlier this year with her singing.
Inspired by Special Olympics Unified Sports – a program that brings athletes with and without intellectual disabilities together on the same team to compete – “Reach Up” embodies the values of optimism, acceptance and inclusion shared by Coca-Cola.
Karen Wallin, CEO of Special Olympics Great Britain said: “Special Olympics is all about providing year-round sports and athletic competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. As a founding partner, Coca-Cola’s support over the years has enabled us to bring people together across the world, giving them opportunities to participate and demonstrate their skills across a range of sports and disciplines. This song is the perfect way to celebrate our partnership, and we look forward to an exciting Games in LA!”
Fans can support Special Olympics by sharing the “Reach Up” music video on social media using the hashtag #ReachUp. Coca-Cola will donate one dollar – up to $100,000 – to Special Olympics for every “Reach Up” video share using the hashtag leading up to the World Games. Fans can listen to “Reach Up” on Spotify and learn more about the musicians’ story on Coca-Cola Journey.
Coca-Cola is the founding partner and global sponsor of Special Olympics, the world’s largest health and sports organization dedicated to people with intellectual disabilities (ID). Since 1968 – Special Olympics’ inception – the Coca-Cola Company has maintained a deep commitment to the organization and has provided more than $190 million in support of its programs through product, equipment, donations and marketing support.
Cola Great Britain (CCGB) is a founding partner of Special Olympics in Great Britain since it launched here in 1978. Today, the organisation is more than 8,000-strong and helping athletes with intellectual disabilities all across Great Britain. The local clubs are run by volunteers, who help them develop their social and life skills.
For further information please contact:
• Emma Juner, Communications Manager, Coca-Cola – firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 8237 3424
• Katie Allsopp and Sophie Pettengale, Blue Rubicon – AHL@bluerubicon.com or 020 7260 2700
About Coca-Cola Great Britain:
Coca-Cola Great Britain is responsible for marketing 19 brands and over 100 products to consumers across Great Britain. Led by Coca-Cola, one of the world's most valuable and recognisable brands, our company portfolio includes Fanta, Sprite, Dr Pepper, Oasis, glaceau vitaminwater, glaceau smartwater, Schweppes, 5 Alive, Lilt, Kia Ora and Powerade. For more information about Coca-Cola in Great Britain, please visit our website at www.coca-cola.co.uk.
About the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games
The 2015 Special Olympics World Games, with the unparalleled spirit, enthusiasm, teamwork, joy and displays of courage and skill that are hallmarks of all Special Olympics events, will feature 25 Olympic-style sports in venues throughout the Los Angeles region. The Opening Ceremony, to be held July 25, 2015 in the historic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, site of the 1932 and 1984 Olympic Games, is expected to attract 80,000 spectators. Honorary Chairs of the Games are President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and California Governor Jerry Brown serving as Honorary Hosts. Current Founding Champions and sponsors include The Coca-Cola Company, Mattel, Deloitte, Kaiser Permanente, Davis Elen Advertising, AEG, David Geffen, Steven Spielberg and his wife Kate Capshaw, The Walt Disney Company, Knights of Columbus and Bank of America. LA2015, the Games Organizing Committee, is a recognized 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. For more information on the 2015 Special Olympics World Games, including volunteer and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.LA2015.org.
About Special Olympics International
Special Olympics is an international organization that changes lives through the power of sport by encouraging and empowering people with intellectual disabilities, promoting acceptance for all, and fostering communities of understanding and respect worldwide. Founded in 1968 by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the Special Olympics movement has grown from a few hundred athletes to more than 4 million athletes in 170 countries in all regions of the world, providing year-round sports training, athletic competition and other related programs. Special Olympics now takes place every day, changing the lives of people with intellectual disabilities all over the world, from community playgrounds and ball fields in every small neighborhood’s backyard to World Games. Special Olympics provides people with intellectual disabilities continuing opportunities to realize their potential, develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, and experience joy and friendship. Visit Special Olympics at http://www.specialolympics.org and engage with us on:@specialolympics, fb.com/specialolympics, youtube.com/specialolympicshq, and specialolympicsblog.wordpress.com.