COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The U.S. Olympic Committee announced today that it will host its United Kingdom allies for the 2012 Warrior Games presented by Deloitte. Twenty volunteers from the UK Armed Forces will compete as guest athletes in the third annual competition for wounded, ill and injured service members and veterans. The competition, hosted by the USOC, is also supported by the Department of Defense, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, USO, Fisher House Foundation, The Daniels Fund, AT&T, BP and the Bob Woodruff Foundation, will take place April 30 - May 5, 2012.
"With our athletes Britain-bound this summer for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we are excited to host our friends from the UK for this exciting competition," said Scott Blackmun, chief executive officer of the USOC. "The Warrior Games truly exemplify the power not just of sport, but of the human spirit. The USOC and our partners at the DoD and VA are committed to ensuring that physical activity programming is available at the community level for our nation's heroes to participate in sport."
The UK team, supported and funded by the UK charity, Help for Heroes, will square off in friendly competition against the five U.S. Armed Forces teams in the following sports: archery, cycling, swimming, track & field and sitting volleyball.
The Warrior Games presented by Deloitte was created in 2010 as an extension of the daily programming being provided at the installation and community level for injured service members and veterans by the USOC Paralympic Military Program, in partnership with the DoD, VA and more than 150 community sport organizations. The competition has become a springboard for many service members and veterans to continue participating in sports programs in their communities after the event.
"The 2012 Warrior Games is a fantastic opportunity for our wounded and injured service personnel to enjoy themselves and reap the benefits of competitive sport," said Chief of the Defence Staff, General Sir David Richards. "I am delighted that British Forces will again be building on the close relationship we have with our U.S. allies. Sport is a powerful tool in the recovery of our people. Battle Back allows individuals to focus on what they can achieve, accelerating their physical, psychological and social recovery. I am proud to support these excellent Games."
"At a time when David Cameron has been visiting Barack Obama to further cement the UK's relationship with the U.S., as well as to discuss what they have called 'the next stage phase of the transition' in Afghanistan, we are delighted that Help for Heroes will support a UK team into such a high profile US event," said Bryn Parry, CEO & co-founder, Help for Heroes. "We know how important sport is in recovery and are delighted to have supported Battle Back since its inception in 2008. This is further enhanced through the Battle Back Phoenix programme which is available in the Personnel Recovery Centres for veterans. Our participation in the Warrior Games is significant in raising awareness of the work that takes place worldwide in supporting wounded, injured and sick Service personnel, especially as we approach a busy year in sport."
The Paralympic movement, an international sports program for persons with physical disabilities, was founded after World War II, at Stoke-Mandeville, about an hour outside of London. The primary emphasis of the program was to provide physical activity and rehabilitation opportunities for injured members of the Armed Forces.
Media interested in covering the 2012 Warrior Games presented by Deloitte can register online for credentials at http://www.cvent.com/d/tcq0gx .