CARIFTA Games to have Special Olympics component

As the 50th CARIFTA Games draws closer, the Local Organizing Committee of the event (LOC) is gratified by the foresight of North American, Central American and Caribbean Athletics Association (NACAC) President Mike Sands on the inclusion of Special Olympics athletes as a part of the festivities.

Sands stated that the goal is to ensure inclusivity as much as possible by all member states under the federation’s banner.

“We know it comes with its challenges, but I have asked the general membership to look at the possibility of being more inclusive in the events that we have throughout the area,” said Sands.

This 50th edition of the CARIFTA Games will include events that allow for Special Olympic athletes to participate. These athletes, based on their performances, will also be selected for other events and competitions, throughout the athletic calendar within the region.

According to Gilbert Williams, National Director of Special Olympics Bahamas, at a time when everyone is talking about inclusion, it is a special moment to see the LOC and NACAC not only “talk the talk” but show the effort to make it happen.

“It is important to see our athletes demonstrate courage, not just here in The Bahamas but throughout the Caribbean,” said Williams.

Dr. Don Deveaux, Chief Medical Officer of Oaktree Medical Center, the title sponsor of the 50th CARIFTA Games, showed his support of this special effort by sponsoring 20 tickets for the upcoming track and field championships.

According to Deveaux, these are to provide for the executives, committee members and coaches of the Special Olympics Bahamas organization, to both thank and encourage them for their efforts in working with these athletes.

“We never want you to tire in doing good deeds. This is just to encourage you, Corporate Bahamas, and Bahamians in general, that we are all in this together. With that mindset, we can see how far the country can go in general,” he said.

As the representative of Special Olympics Bahamas, within the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, the Dame of the 50th CARIFTA Games Pauline Davis also gave thanks. She thanked Deveaux for his contribution and both NACAC and the LOC for having the vision to include these athletes as a part of the 50th CARIFTA Games.

Leader of the Free National Movement (FNM) Michael Pintard, along with Deputy Leader Shanendon Cartwright, showed their support for the upcoming CARIFTA Games by sporting CARIFTA gear. They purchased $2,500 worth of tickets in support of the event. They said this is to ensure that they and those of their local constituencies come out and support our local athletes. 

Pintard stated that this event is special to us as a nation and region and should be seen as a point of unification in support of Team Bahamas.

In preparation for the 50th CARIFTA Games, the final round of qualifiers, the CARIFTA Trials/High School Nationals will be held March 25-27 at the Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium. The CARIFTA Games itself is set for April 8-10, 2023, at the Thomas A. Robinson stadium.

Tickets for the event are now available for purchase online at or at the box office of the 50th CARIFTA Games, at the Eastern Grandstand of the Thomas. A. Robinson National Stadium on the same side as the Road Traffic Department.

For more information, interested persons can subscribe to the website or follow the event on its social media pages on Instagram, @carifa2023, or on Facebook: @50thCariftaGames2023.

Interested persons can also call the telephone number (242) 808-Gold or send an e-mail to the address to take advantage of the opportunity to partner with the LOC for the staging of the 50th CARIFTA Games.

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