(18 Oct) Sofia Owls – Paralympic Volleyball Team with First Training Session (+GAL)

On 18 October 2019 the first Sofia Owls Sitting Volleyball Club’s training session took place in the University of Mining and Geology. 

Special thanks to our Past President – Mr. Enrico Repouz, who have made all of this possible. It all started as an idea of Enrico about one year ago and now we have a club set up and first game played for people with disabilities.

Rotary Club Sofia International has established a “sitting volleyball club” called “Sofia Owls”, a non-profit organization. The club is funded by Rotary Club Sofia International, donations and sponsors.

The club’s goal is to create perspectives, teach theory, practice & exercise regularly, demystify obstacles, coach physically and mentally, create necessary environment (league) to practice new skill sets, encourage transfer in sports.

Sofia Owls is the first Paralympic volleyball team in Bulgaria.

Why are we doing that? Due to:

  • lack of integration of
    people with disabilities,
  • ethnic background, to transcend
    border of able & disable sports, overcome stigma of disability
  • foster positive energy,
    create job opportunities
  • help to self-help and
    due to lack of perspective for disabled children
  • hope through role-models.

Rules to play the game: 6 players; must have at least one buttock in contact with the floor whenever they make contact with the ball. It is also possible to block the serve and jousts are generally replayed. The playground is 10 x 6 meters with a 2-meter attack line. The net is 7 meters long & 0.80 meters wide; suspended at 1.15 meters height (men). Who can play? Athletes with amputations, spinal cord injuries, cerebral palsy, brain injuries and stroke are eligible to compete in sitting volleyball.

There are no athlete classifications by disability. Anyone can become a member of “Sofia Owls”; disabled and able-body people alike. Our goals: be an example, forge a team of able and disable athletes, start the ball rolling others will follow, co-found other sitting Volleyball clubs in Bulgaria, create a league, create jobs for support personnel and players alike, involve other Rotary Clubs, create national team for sitting volleyball, Olympic participation 2024 in Paris.

Anyone who is willing to join is welcome. And all Rotary clubs can contact us for additional information and support in setting up such teams.

 

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