Special Olympian's inspirational message for International Women's Day

Disability is not inability. This was the message shared by a representative of Special Olympics Samoa, Silia Afele Atonio, during the commemoration of the International Women's Day at the Tooa Salamasina building.

"I may be weak but I am a winner,” she said. “When I win, I feel happy and proud about my achievements, and this what the Special Olympics in Samoa encourages us to do and feel.”

Silia represented Samoa at the Special Olympics 2019 in Abu Dhabi.

Born on 19th June 1996, the 22-year-old from Magiagi is the eldest child of her family and is a teacher aid at Loto Taumafai who loves soccer, shot put and javelin.

"I am honored to be here and be a part of this special event, and to represent the Special Olympics in Samoa.

 “I want to thank the President of the Special Olympics in Samoa Leta'a Maiava Daniel Devoe for choosing me to be their representative.”

She said she does not allow her disability to stand in the way of fulfilling her dreams.

At Abu Dhabi, she said it was an amazing experience.

“I've saw a lot of different things things that we’d never seen before, riding on a plane was one of the moments we athletes will cherish," she added.

She was especially proud about being able to fly Samoa’s flag, with the support of her mentors, coaches and the Team Samoa management.

As for the future, she said: "We must unite and know that we are all equal despite our gender or our state, whether we have disability we are all the same."

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