According to WHO 2011 report, 2-3% of the world population have an intellectual impairment. That’s between 178-256 million people worldwide. It is estimated that about 1% of the world population have autism (WHO, 2022), which accounts for another 78 million people. Through sport, Virtus and the IDEAL_2.0 project want to support our athletes with intellectual impairment and/or autism to change attitudes, challenge perceptions, and strengthen communities locally and globally.
The IDEAL_2.0 project is funded by the EU and brings together a consortium of partners that share the ambition to strive towards an inclusive and equitable world of sports for people with intellectual impairment and/or autism. As one of the IDEAL_2.0 partners, Virtus is responsible for raising awareness in society about the meaning of sport for our athletes and their potential to excel in sports and even become elite athletes.
Sport has proved to bring significant changes in the lives of people with intellectual impairment and/or autism. For some, it is a pathway to their Paralympic dream, while for others it helps them forge their own destiny into another profession. For many, sports gives them meaningful friendships and for others, it is a place they can go all out and be themselves.
To bring out the unspoken stories, Virtus is organizing a photo contest in conjunction with the IDEAL 2.0 project, to give people with an intellectual impairment and/or autism a chance to share “what does sport mean to me”?