The Oakland Raiders and San Francisco 49ers have joined the NFL, along with the San Diego Chargers, in supporting the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles starting Saturday, July 25.
Raider Nation on Location (RNOL), an interactive fan zone, will be featured on July 26 at UCLA’s Wilson Plaza and on July 27, the Raiders will host a free Football Clinic. Both events will take place from 1 – 9 p.m. each day at the Sports Experience Field located in the Athletes Festival.
The Raiderettes will participate in festivities by cheering as part of the Special Olympics World Games Cheer for LA program.
Raiders alumni and members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Mike Haynes and James Lofton will present medals to Special Olympics athletes on July 27 at the bocce and bowling events.
The San Francisco 49ers and San Diego Chargers are each contributing to the World Games by assisting the athletes. The 49ers are supporting the Nepalese Delegation and the Chargers, the Greek Delegation.
The “Support An Athlete” initiative and “Support a Delegation” campaign are part of the LA2015 World Games, helping to pay for the housing, feeding and transportation of athletes once they arrive in Southern California.
“The NFL and our member clubs are honored to support the Special Olympics World Games – an event dedicated to providing opportunities for athletes of all abilities,” said NFL senior vice president of social responsibility, Anna Isaacson.
“We look forward to celebrating these inspirational athletes from around the world and enhancing their experience in Los Angeles,” she said.
The NFL will host a free Football Fan Fest for all World Games attendees and athletes on July 28 and 29 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. at UCLA’s Wilson Plaza. Featuring PLAY 60 obstacle courses and NFL FLAG clinics, former NFL players, including Luis Castillo and Jesse Sapolu amongst others, will be onsite participating in football skills and drills.
Special Olympics International will host a Unified Football game on July 28 from 4 – 6 p.m. on UCLA’s Intramural Field, pairing Special Olympics athletes with World Games honored guests and NFL alumni players.
NFL alumni players will also coach a flag football showcase game July 28 on UCLA’s North Athletic Field as Special Olympics Southern California joins forces with students from UCLA.
Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles, Cleveland Browns cornerback Joe Haden and Dallas Cowboys linebacker Keith Rivers, in addition to alumni players including six-time Pro Bowler Terrell Owens amongst others, have joined in supporting the World Games.
In January, Haden was the first NFL player to be named a Special Olympics Global Ambassador.
The 2015 Special Olympics World Games will be the largest sports and humanitarian event hosted by Los Angeles since the 1984 Olympic Games, with more than 6,500 athletes and 2,000 coaches representing 165 countries, along with 30,000 volunteers and 500,000 spectators in attendance.
To learn more about the Special Olympics 2015 World Games, visit LA2015.org.