Tomlinson was in Abu Dhabi as part of the British Embassy’s celebrations for the Queen’s birthday

19 April 2018, Abu Dhabi: Britain’s Got Talent 2017 finalist and Special Olympics ambassador Kyle Tomlinson met the UAE’s people of determination this week as he visited Abu Dhabi to take part in celebrations for HM The Queen’s birthday at the British Embassy.

During his trip, Tomlinson visited the Future Centre and spent time interacting with children with intellectual disabilities, taking part in their games, singing along with popular nursery rhymes and even giving a powerful performance of Ed Sheeran’s hit song Perfect. It is believed that music therapy can assist those with intellectual disabilities.

Tomlinson, who is an Special Olympics ambassador, performed at the Special Olympics GB National Games 2017 in his home city of Sheffield.

“It’s been a real privilege to be here in Abu Dhabi this week to take part in The Queen’s birthday celebrations, to stay at the British Embassy and to work with Special Olympics UAE,” Tomlinson said.

“Singing can be so important to people with intellectual disabilities and I’ve seen first-hand how it can bring joy and happiness to people. I hope to return to witness the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019”.

By invitation of the British Embassy to celebrate the Queen’s Birthday, the 16-year-old singer performed alongside students from The British School Al Khubairat and the Future Centre at the British Embassy Abu Dhabi.
Philip Parham, British Ambassador to the UAE, said: “It's been great to have Kyle with us this week to help with our celebration of HM The Queen's Birthday. As an ambassador for Special Olympics, Kyle promotes the messages of inclusion and unity in society. His interactions with students from both the Future Rehabilitation Centre and BSAK were hugely rewarding experiences for the children."

"Having Kyle here in Abu Dhabi to meet and interact with people of determination has been an enriching and exciting experience for everyone. Kyle’s visit is one of many engagements that the British Embassy in Abu Dhabi has led to promote the UAE’s mission to promote inclusion through the Special Olympic World Games.” Said Tala Al Ramahi, Chief Strategic Officer of Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019. “Engaged partners like the British Embassy and celebrities like Kyle add great momentum to this movement as we plan to host the most inclusive Games ever in 2019,” She added.

Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 is a part of the UAE’s National Vision 2021 that highlights full integration of people of determination into everyday society. Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 will be the most ‘unified’ games in history and promises to offer an inclusive experience for those with and without intellectual disabilities.

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About the 2019 Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi (AD2019)
The Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019, scheduled for March 14-21, will be the largest sports and humanitarian event anywhere in the world, with 7,000 athletes and 3,000 coaches representing more than 170 countries. The World Games will be an unprecedented display of the spirit, joy, courage and skill that are hallmarks of Special Olympics movement. The largest single event ever held in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the first Special Olympics World Games in the Middle East and North Africa, the World Games features 24 officially sanctioned Olympic-style sports in venues throughout Abu Dhabi. The spectacular opening ceremony on March 14 is expected to attract 45,000 spectators while being viewed by millions worldwide via global broadcast partners ESPN and Abu Dhabi Media.

Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the 2019 World Games will be the most unified Special Olympics competition in history, with inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities in every aspect of the event. The Games are the most visible component of a planned series of initiatives by Abu Dhabi and the UAE to expand opportunity for people of determination (with intellectual disabilities), and to promote inclusion and understanding throughout the emirate, nation, and region. Plans for operation of the World Games include leaving a legacy of improved health, education, and inclusion that will benefit the UAE long after the event is over.