Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Slovakia Paralympic Games FDC

Slovakia FDC
Name: Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games
Date of Issue: 06 June 2008

The XIII Paralympic Games will be held 6 – 17 September 2008 in Beijing. The sailing and equestrian competitions will be hosted by Qingdao and Hong Kong, respectively. A record number of competitors – more than 4,000 sportsmen and sportswomen from 150 countries – will compete in a record number of 18 sports, with the assistance of 2,500 trainers and support team members. A total of 471 gold medals will be distributed. Media coverage will involve 4,000 people, and 30,000 volunteers from all over the world will facilitate the smooth course of the Games. The competitions will take place in the Olympic sports facilities with the paralympic slogan 'Spirit in Motion'. The Paralympic movement was inspired by Sir Ludwig Guttman (1899 – 1980), a great physician, the Commander of the Order of the British Empire, and the father of the idea of sport as a method of therapy for the disabled. He is also the founder of the British Sports Association of the Disabled, as well as the Summer (1960) and Winter Paralympic Games (1976). He was awarded the Fearnley Cup (1956) – an award for outstanding contribution to the spreading of the Olympic ideal - and inspired many devoted successors. As evident from the increasing number of participants at the Paralympics Games, the paralympic movement is flourishing. The first PG was organised in Rome in 1960 and attended by 400 competitors from 23 countries. The fifth PG in Toronto 1976 was attended by 1,600 competitors from 42 countries. As many as 3,195 sportsmen and sportswomen from 103 countries competed at the X Paralympic Games in Atlanta in 1996, including Slovak competitors who won 11 medals. The Slovak Paralympic Committee was founded on 31 January 1995 as a body associating disabled competitors with physical, sensory (sight and hearing), and mental impairments. It is a member of the International Paralympic Committee associating 161 countries. Let's hope that the track record of 10 gold, 7 silver, and 14 bronze medals from the Paralympic Games in Atlanta, Sydney, and Athens, in athletics, cycling, archery, swimming, table tennis, and volleyball, will inspire these outstanding sportsmen and sportswomen in the run-up to the Olympic challenge.

Comment: This is the first real posted FDC of 2008 Paralympic Games in my collection. I know many countries had issued or will issue 2008 Olympic Games stamps, but only few country had issued or will issue 2008 Paralympic Games stamps.

Estonia 2008 Beijing Olympic Games Gold Medalist Autographed FDC
Estonia 2008 Beijing Olympic Games Silver Medalists Autographed Postal Stationery

2008 Beijing Olympic Games FDCs:
Algeria, Belarus, Canada, Czech Republic, Estonia, Estonia Sheetlet, Great Britain, Hong Kong, Hong Kong M/S, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Portugal M/S, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Ukraine.

2008 Beijing Paralympic Games FDCs:
Czech Republic, Slovakia.

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