Gala Retail Skis Off In Support Of Special Olympics Ireland

Gala Retail reaffirms its commitment to supporting local athletes as over 207 participants gear up to compete in the Special Olympics Ireland Winter Games this March. This marks the tenth consecutive year that Gala Retail has supported Special Olympics Ireland, demonstrating its steadfast commitment to supporting local communities and athletes across Ireland.

The Special Olympics Ireland Winter Games, being held in Craigavon, Northern Ireland from Friday 22 to Sunday 24 March 2024, will gather athletes from all corners of Ireland. Comprising of two sports, Alpine Skiing and Floorball, the Ireland Winter Games is set to be one of the largest games yet with 2024 being the first time that three regions will participate in Alpine Skiing and all five regions represented in Floorball.

Special Olympics Ireland athletes Martha Power, Mary Kate Drake McPartlan and Brian McSweeney, pictured with Gary Desmond, CEO of Gala Retail and Matt English, Chief Executive of Special Olympics Ireland.

Gary Desmond, CEO of Gala Retail, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership and the upcoming Winter Games: “Over the past ten years, we have witnessed first-hand the great work that Special Olympics Ireland contributes to communities across Ireland. We’ve experienced many #GalaSpecialMoments and supported the athletes in their journeys from area games right through to world games.

“With athletes and clubs in locations all across Ireland, Special Olympics has a place in the heart of many communities and with almost 230 group stores in towns and villages throughout Ireland, there’s a real synergy with this partnership.

“We are thrilled to be continuing our journey with Special Olympics Ireland and we wish all of the 207 athletes the very best of luck in the events.”

Gary Desmond, CEO of Gala Retail pictured with Special Olympics athletes Martha Power, Brian McSweeney, Mary Kate Drake McPartlan and Chief Executive of Special Olympics Ireland, Matt English.

Speaking ahead of the games, Matt English, Chief Executive, Special Olympics Ireland, added: “Gala Retail has been an invaluable partner to Special Olympics Ireland, championing our athletes and providing crucial resources to facilitate their participation in events like the Winter Games. Without the support of sponsors like Gala, we couldn’t continue to provide our athletes with all the benefits that go with being part of the Special Olympics community.

“I am extremely proud and am looking forward to watching our athletes represent their county in the upcoming Ireland Winter Games.”

The Ireland Winter Games will be a highlight for Special Olympics athletes right across Ireland this year, having been postponed in 2020 due to Covid-19. For many, this will be their first opportunity to compete on an All-Ireland level. These Ireland Games are the qualifying event for the World Winter Games in Turin, Italy in 2025.