|The Abilympics to start in Korea|
TeamFinland is packed and ready for the competitions that are just around the corner now. The WorldSkills competition is due to be held in London from 4th to 9th October 2011. The Abilympics, the skills competition for people with special needs, will take place before that in Seoul from 25th to 30th September 2011.The Finnish team setting out for South Korea includes seven competitors. The competition has 33 skills categories and Finland is taking part in six of these: CAD architecture, computer assembly, floral arrangement, furniture making, jewellery making and studio photography. Finland will be sending two competitors to compete in computer assembly, and one competitor for each of the other categories. The seven competitors will be accompanied and supported by their coaches. Finland is also sending two judges to the competition to the CAD architecture and floral arrangement categories.
The International Abilympics is a competition for students with special needs. The basis for entering the competition is a disability that affects the person's everyday life. The minimum age for competitors is 15 years, with no maximum age limit. More than 400 competitors from 30 different countries will be taking part in the Ablilympics. The members of Team Finland have gone through an almost year-long national team training programme, with focus on work skills as well as mental training.
– Finland needs the expertise and work of all of its citizens. Employing special groups is partly a question of education and partly a question of attitudes, therefore we need tools to develop vocational special education, to reshape attitudes and to help raise awareness of the expertise of these students. The Finnish TaitajaPLUS competition and the International Abilympics are a good way to promote all these aims, summed up Minister of Education and Science Jukka Gustafsson on 9th September at the House of Estates as he wished the competitors well as they set off on their journey.
Get the latest news on the competitions at the Skills Finland website!
Team Finland brochure, pages 16–29