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Bell credits sponsors’ input for success

Published:Monday | August 10, 2015 | 4:50 PMShayne Fairman
Collin Reid photo courtesy of Digicel, Scotiabank and Chase Fund Jonathan Lowe displays the gold medal he won in the 100m freestyle M14 class at the USC AQUATIC Centre at the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.
Collin Reid photo courtesy of Digicel, Scotiabank and Chase Fund TIM SHRIVER (second left), head of the Special Olympic Movement, celebrates with Kirk Wint during the 2015 Games' closing ceremony at the LA Coliseum on Sunday, August 2, 2015. Sharing the moment were Lorna Bell (left), executive director, Special Olympics Jamaica and coaches Lori Scott-Moore and Tameka Llewellyn (right).

Bell credits sponsors' input for success

Believing Special Olympics Jamaica (SOJ) made a big Brand Jamaica impression at the recent Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles, California, the organisation's executive director, Lorna Bell, moved to credit corporate sponsors, supporters and the Government for helping to actualise that outstanding showing.

Jamaica returned home last week with 29 medals from the July 25-August 2 summer showpiece.

Prior to that, SOJ was the recipient of a $10-million donation from telecommunications giants Digicel to assist in their travel and accommodation.

While Digicel's donation was the leading sponsorship, other companies and organisations like the Jamaica Constabulary Force, with its Law Enforcement Torch Run, also raised $2.5 million. The Sports Development Foundation (SDF) also donated $2 million, while team gear worn by the athletes was supplied by sportswear company Puma.

"We couldn't have done it without them ... Digicel, the Law Enforcement Torch Run, Puma and of course the Government of Jamaica," Bell told The Gleaner.

She was speaking at the official welcome/celebration press conference for the team's arrival, held at the Pineapple Room at The Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston.

"Well, I am hoping that after all this exposure with ESPN, ABC and, of course, Jamaica ... no one will be left behind. Let us all work together as a team. Let us all work together as a family and get all these children involved in all that is happening," she continued.

Bell added that the only low point with Team Jamaica at the Games was that they were not together all the time.

"Three sports were at UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) and the other five were at USC (University of South California), so we couldn't have got to see each other, as we would want to cheer on each other, but Jamaicans came out, they supported us, and I really have to thank those people overseas also," stressed the executive director.