A Spread the Word to Stop the R-Word….


Having a conversation about the r-word can be difficult and often uncomfortable. Use the dialogues and tips below to help you successfully articulate why the r-word is hurtful and harmful in everyday speech.

Dialogue Scenario 1: When a friend/family member uses the r-word

Person 1:       I am such a retard; I forgot to get milk at the grocery store.

Person 2:       Hey, I would appreciate it if you didn’t use the word retard around me anymore.

Person 1: Oh don’t worry about it; it’s not a big deal.

Person 2: It actually is a big deal, when you use retard as a synonym for stupid or idiot, you are saying that all people with intellectual disabilities are stupid, and that’s definitely not true.

Person 1: But I’m not making fun of people who are mentally retarded, it’s just a figure of speech. It’s how I talk.

Person 2: The thing is, when you use the R-word as slang, you really are hurting people with intellectual disabilities because of the negative connotation of your comment. The R-word has been associated with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities since its inception, so when you use the word in a negative context, you’re putting down people with intellectual disabilities, regardless of if you mean to or not.

Person 1: I appreciate what you’re saying, but it’s imbedded into my vocabulary. I couldn’t stop saying it if I tried.

Person 2: I’m not trying to tell you what you can or cannot say, but what I want you to recognize is that people with intellectual disabilities deserve respect, and using another word instead of the R-word is one step towards making them feel respected and valued in society.

Person 1:       Ok, I can understand it might be hurtful to use the word when a person with an intellectual disability is around, but why does it matter now, when I’m just hanging out and joking with my friends?

Person 2:       Using the R-word doesn’t just hurt people with intellectual disabilities, but it also hurt their friends and families. [Discuss personal story about why this is important to you]. Having seen the hurt that the R-word can cause, I know it’s important for me to take a stand and try to change the conversation. I hope you can understand why it hurts and upsets me when the R-word is used and why I would appreciate if you chose another word to use.

Person 1:       I’m sorry; I didn’t realize how much the R-word upset you. I will try to use another word instead.

Person 2: Thank you for understanding.

Tips for a successful conversation:

  • Stay calm and collected, it will not help the other person see your point if you are angry and emotional.
  • Try to understand the reason he/she disagrees with you. Listen, be respectful and then provide a counterargument that highlights the harmful and hurtful effects of using the R-word.
  • Share a personal story about why the R-word is hurtful to you. Personal stories will help people more easily relate to what you are saying because it illustrates your personal commitment to the campaign.
  • If you encounter a question you are unable to answer, direct the individual to the Spread the Word to End the Word website (www.r-word.org) to learn more about the campaign, Special Olympics and Best Buddies.

“Everyone has a gift and the world would be better off if we recognized it.” – Timothy Shriver, Chairman and CEO of Special Olympics.

The R-word is the word ‘retard(ed)’. Why does it hurt? The R-word hurts because it is exclusive. It’s offensive. It’s derogatory. The R-word is hate speech. See why supporters think the R-Word is hurtful when used in jokes or as part of everyday speech. More on Effects >

“Everyone has a gift and the world would be better off if we recognized it.” – Timothy Shriver, Chairman and CEO of Special Olympics.

The R-word is the word ‘retard(ed)’. Why does it hurt? The R-word hurts because it is exclusive. It’s offensive. It’s derogatory. The R-word is hate speech. See why supporters think the R-Word is hurtful when used in jokes or as part of everyday speech. More on Effects >


How “retardation” went from a clinical description to a word of derision

When they were originally introduced, the terms “mental retardation” or “mentally retarded” were medical terms with a specifically clinical connotation; however, the pejorative forms, “retard” and “retarded” have been used widely in today’s society to degrade and insult people with intellectual disabilities. Additionally, when “retard” and “retarded” are used as synonyms for “dumb” or “stupid” by people without disabilities, it only reinforces painful stereotypes of people with intellectual disabilities being less valued members of humanity.


ΠΑΤΡΑ εντάχθηκαν στο πρόγραμμα «ΠΟΛΙΣ ΑΜΦΙΤΡΥΩΝ»!

With the mayor of Patras Andreas Fouras to receive the flag of the Special Olympics World Games ATHENS 2011, the Chairman of the Organizing Committee, Gianna Despotopoulou completed the Achaean capital of the event falls in the “City Amphitryon.

In this context, Patras will host 300 athletes of Special Olympics, four days before the Games begin (25 June – 4 July 2011). The event was held at Therapeutic Education Center Patras ‘CARE’.

The Chairman of the Organizing Committee “Athens 2011” Gianna Despotopoulou, in her speech said: “We welcome everyone ready individual athletes and with them, because of the strong humanitarian nature of our struggle, will come to our country and many high guests from the world of international politics, international organizations and charitable foundations. Also, people will attend from the world of art and entertainment, who selflessly support the Global Movement for Special Olympics.

Patras was chosen to be one of the 60 cities and islands of Greece, will host 300 athletes for four days, who will receive the Flame of Hope. The city will come alive, and Patra will be screened abroad.

By Andreas Fouras, I work almost two decades and actively supported by the Greek Committee for Special Olympics over the years was deputy sports minister. ”

The Mayor of Patras, for its part, stated: “When we came to the program here in Patras decided to support with all our might. Of course there is the economic situation that the surplus of one particular soul, not the fund can offer something. We set up a very strong team in Patras. I thank them all because they voluntarily offer to this effort to host the services and accommodation of children are services that reflect the warmth and hospitality that knows how to offer our city. “



With a special ceremony at the Palace of the Grand Master in Rhodes completed his tour Sraiver Tim Kennedy, under the “City Amphitryon, the Special Olympics World Games ATHENS 2011.The President of the International Committee of Special Olympics (SOI) and Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the World Games in Athens, Gianna Despotopoulou within 24 hours began in Alexandroupolis, passed from Kavala and then traveled to Rhodes in a tour full of messages of humanity and solidarity.

Cast was the Special Olympics athletes and their families who welcomed in every city, enthusiastically Sraiver Mr. Kennedy and Ms. Despotopoulou. Protagonist, and the President of SOI, who in a speech at the Lighthouse of Alexandroupolis and looking at the statue of a woman struggling, proposed to create an equivalent to capturing the Greek mother and the daily struggle to do, growing up a child with intellectual disabilities. Protagonist and the Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism, George Nikitiadis, who said once more “present” call in the Special Olympics, an event held yesterday in Rhodes.

But everything began to Alexandroupolis border on Wednesday.The representative of the Government, Deputy Interior Minister George Ntolios the Evros Prefect Nikos Zampounidis and Mayors of cities will take part To the “host town”, George Alexandris (Alexandroupolis) and George Oustoglou (Ferron) spoke warmly of the initiative it. Then, on the Lighthouse, presented works of children in special education schools Alexandroupolis, who sang about love and “Sport unites the hearts.” In the event the “present” also gave the Metropolitan of Alexandroupolis, Samothraki and Traianoupoleos Anthimos, but the owners three Olympic medals in athletics, Source Devetzi and Katerina Thanou. The ceremony ended with the Lighthouse for a surprise: Alexandroupolis will forever something Sraiver Tim Kennedy, as chairman of the SOI has left the imprint of the palm to the creation of copper.

Next stop, Thursday morning, Kavala. Local authorities held a ceremony in Freedom Square, in front of City Hall in the city. The Bishop of Philippi, Neapolis and Thasos Prokopios talked about “raising awareness of local communities, groups of people facing problems.” The Mayor of Kavala Kostas Simitsis argued that “… the struggle is to protect those people who have equal rights with all our struggle is to save ourselves.” Concluding the event, Tim Kennedy and Sraiver Gianna Despotopoulou, was awarded a honorary citizen of the city.

Rhodes and the Palace of Grand Masters in the castle of the Knights, the atmosphere was impressive in the afternoon Thursday. The Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism, George Nikitiadis, won the highest distinction of the Special Olympics, with Gianna Despotopoulou to surrender the special medal, saying: “To get close to our efforts.” Mr. Nikitiadis replied: “But I’m always on your side!” The Secretary talked about, even for the Games and the participation of Rhodes in the hospitality program: Greece even in these difficult circumstances, is consistent with its international obligations. Especially in this, which is a product of humanity. I am proud that in my hometown, my compatriots are pioneers in the City program, Amphitryon. The private initiative is doing everything to be okay on our international obligations. And this is especially important in a given period.

In his speech, Tim Sraiver Kennedy was among others on: “I’m happy and excited that I found in these cities because I saw people around me who have decided to stand next to the movement of Special Olympics. We want these cities to accommodate people with intellectual disabilities, not only for four days, but on a daily basis. To change that mindset. ”

Also, Ms. Despotopoulou said: “Our goal is to bring to the fore those who are now in the background. As mothers of children who do not seek pity, but their children live with dignity. It has been shown that sport is the more correct way to integrate these children into society and the labor market. We must create an environment that respects the diversity of everyone.

All venue, the Organising Committee Athens 2011 Special Olympics honored with special credentials of representatives of all the hotels that reported participation in “Amphitryon City, offering free hosting. The response is so intense, so far has reached almost 90% of the claims, which provide accommodation 7,500 athletes and 2,500 coaches, escorts in various cities of Greece, four days before the Games begin in June 2011.




Bourtzi of Skiathos, in the presence of hundreds of citizens and tourists, but two stars of world cinema, signed the Memorandum of integration of the island in “POLIS – AMPHITRYON” of the Special Olympics World Games ATHENS 2011 by the President of the Organising Committee Ms Gianna Despotopoulou and Skiathos Mayor Mr Nicholas Plomaritis.

The island will host the 230meli Mission from the UK and therefore the signing ceremony of the Memorandum was also attended by the Ambassador of Great Britain, David Lantsman, who praised the statements of offering residents and the Local Government Association SANTICOS HOTELS given free hosting of the British athletes.

The event was attended by the Representative of the Prime Minister and Secretary for Youth Mr. Livanos, Members Mr Kartalis K. and P. Markakis, the honorary chairman of Special Olympics Hellas Mr. Potamianos, Prefectural and Municipal Consultants, Special Olympics athletes in county , students of Primary Schools and representatives of church, military and port authority and the Greek Police.

The surprise of the Special Olympics reserved to the guests was the presence of supporters of actors Kurt Russell and Goldie Chooun. Cast in some of the biggest successes in the film, said that 2011 will be present along with several colleagues to encourage and applaud the 7500 athletes from 185 countries will take part in separate events hosted by our country and urged all Greeks to shout “I’m In” during the event.

The President Gianna Despotopoulou, awarded the highest award of Special Olympics in Skiathos Mayor Mr Nicholas Plomaritis and Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee “POLIS – AMPHITRYON” Ms. Vicky Shantou for exceptional service and the public awareness campaign of the island as Volunteers will welcome athletes and will host events in their honor.


1. From left: Kurt Russel, President of the ATHENS 2011 Mrs. C. Despotopoulou the Goldie Hawn and Chairman of the Host Town Skiathos TA 2011, Ms. Vicky Shantou

2. The honorary guests of the event

3. Athletes SOHellas with the President of the ATHENS 2011 delivered to the Mayor of Skiathos flag SO

4. H Chairman of the Organizing Athens 2011 at the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding with the Mayor of Skiathos Mr. Plomaritis



‘I’m inside, “said the political and ecclesiastical leadership of Evia Program Host Town« Polis Amphitryon. In a ceremony held at County Hall Council Chalkis, signed a memorandum of understanding to integrate the county in this program.

In this context, Chalkis and Eretria will host 300 athletes, four days before the start of the World Special Olympics Games Athens 2011 (25 June – 4 July 2011). The bulk of the children will be staying for free at Hotel Katerina, Eretria.

The President of the Athens 2011 Organizing Committee, Gianna Despotopoulou, in her speech said: “The Chalcis and Eretria were selected for inclusion in 60 cities and islands of Greece, will host these distinguished athletes. This program is an integral part of the World Games. One of the objectives is to promote mutual understanding between different cultures, emphasizing the particular talents and skills of people with intellectual disabilities.

The MoU signed with the President, the Prefect of Evia, D. Bourantas, the mayor Chalkideon Thanassis Zempilis mayor and Eretria Amphitrite Alimpate presence of Bishop Chalkis Istieas and Sporades Chrysostom, MP LD Evia, Simos Kedikoglou of Champion of Peace Aindili ensemble, world wrestling champion Fani Psathas and Special Olympics athletes from Euboea.





Completed the Pathways program in Thessaloniki hosting athletes Special Olympics, «CITY-AMPHITRYON. The Chairman of the Organizing Committee Special Olympics World Games ATHENS 2011, Mrs Gianna Despotopoulou, held meetings with businessmen and hoteliers institutional bodies of the Law in a climate of solidarity, where he got the assurance of their willingness to welcome 500 athletes 4 days before the official opening of Games.

Also during the Thessaloniki International Fair, the president of Athens 2011, met with sponsors of the Games and attended at the opening of OPAP (Sponsor) which had a private meeting with the Managing Director of the Agency, Mr. Ioannis Spanoudakis and met with the new Secretary of State for Health, Nutrition and Sports, Mr Chris Nightingale.

The Special Olympics World Games ATHENS 2011 will be held from June 25 to July 4, 2011. In the 7500 Games will bring together athletes and 2,500 coaches from 185 countries, 3,000 judges / referees, 40,000 family members of athletes, 25,000 volunteers and the event will cover 3,000 journalists from around the world.

Files 1: The Chairman of the Organizing Committee for the Special Olympics World Summer Games Athens 2011, Gianna Despotopoulou the Secretary for Health, Nutrition and Sports, Chris Nightingale



Files 2: The Gianna Despotopoulou front of the stand of OPAP, the Thessaloniki International Fair, which depicted, among others, the Secretaries of State for Infrastructure, Transport and Network and Spiros Yiannis Magriotis Vougias, the Secretary for Health, Nutrition and Fitness Chris Nightingale CEO company OPAP SA, Giannis Spanoudakis



283 Days Before the Games


Corfu and the Ionian Islands, embraced with fervor and enthusiasm Special Olympics World Games ATHENS 2011. In a magnificent location on the island of Corfu, the Palace of St. Michael and St. George, signed the Memorandum of Understanding between the OE Special Olympics World Games ATHENS 2011, the Ionian islands of Corfu Municipality and the Association of Travel Agents and Maritime Corfu ( AOCTA)

H Chairman of the Organising Committee Ms Gianna Despotopoulou, thanked the people of Corfu hotel that embraces the program “POLIS-AMPHITRYON” to accommodate, just before the Games begin, between 20 and 24 June 2011, over 600 athletes coming from Austria, Germany and Italy, by awarding them with the help of Special Olympics athletes from Corfu, distinctions.

“The Odyssey, Kerkyra is the last stop before reaching the Odysseus of Ithaca. And in our program “POLIS-AMPHITRYON” Corfu is also a milestone which will contribute to the success of the Games, “said Ms Despotopoulou.

“I’m in” exclaimed the Ambassador of Austria, Mr. Michael Lincharnt who expressed the gratitude of his country to the local community for hosting the athletes of Austria on the island of Corfu in the program of the ATHENS 2011. Similar strongly appealed to Corfu and the Chargé d’Affaires of the Embassy of Germany, Mr. Buddha Delacroix and the First Secretary of the Embassy of Italy Mr. Martin Brooke, who honored the event with their presence.

At the end of the event, Ms. Eleni Bisti, Ambassador of Goodwill Games, Athens 2011, won the highest award of Special Olympics, Eunice Kennedy Medal-Sraiver for the five-year supply and support the movement.

The hotels that will accommodate the athletes are:

1. Aquis Sandy Beach Resort
2. Aqua Land Resort
3. Chandris Hotels & Resorts
4. Corfu Imperial hotel (Grecotel)
5. Elea Beach – Livadi Nafsika Hotel
6. Grand Mediterraneo Resort & Spa
7. Kontokali Bay
8. Louis Hotels
9. Marbella Hotel
10. Park Hotel Corfu
11. Sentido Aeolos Beach Hotel

The Special Olympics World Games ATHENS 2011 will be held from June 25 to July 4, 2011. In the 7500 Games will bring together athletes and 2,500 coaches from 185 countries, 3,000 judges / referees, 40,000 family members of athletes, 25,000 volunteers and the event will cover 3,000 journalists from around the world.


1) The Memorandum of Understanding signed by the President of AOCTA, Dimitris Haritos, the Chairman of the Organizing Committee for the World Games Special Olympics 2011, Gianna Despotopoulou, the Secretary General of the Ionian Islands, Costas Georgalidis and the Mayor of Corfu Sotiris Mikalef (shown from left to right)

2) Joanne Despotopoulou during speech

3) Joanne Despotopoulou children with Special Olympics from Corfu

Στο πλαίσιο της «ΑΜΦΙΤΡΥΩΝ ΠΟΛΗ” και τη Ζάκυνθο

165 Days Before the Games


The island is now officially “Polis Amphitryon” of the World Games Special Olympics 2011. In a memorandum signed by His Eminence Metropolitan of Zakynthos Chrysostomos and President of the Organizing Committee for the Games, Gianna Despotopoulou a special ceremony held at the Monastery Archontariki Strofades and St. Dionysius.

Present at the event and the Mayor of Zakynthos, Stelios Bozikas, representatives of the Hotel Association of Municipal Unity Arcadia and non-governmental organization ONAR through art for the sick child ‘and pupils of special schools and children ODAZ.

Fifty volunteers have already signed up in the “City Amphitryon,” according to which will be accommodated in hotels of the island for a four day before the games (21-24 June) Special Olympics athletes from South Africa, Portugal, Djibouti, the Ghana and Qatar.
In his address Bishop Chrysostomos said: “Participants teach us that through the darkness comes light problems, such as through the Psycho-physical illness appears strongly about something higher and stronger. These people claim rate in every aspect of life and not entitled to disability but on the specific abilities which most can not imagine, “said Chrysostomos.

H president of Athens 2011 Organizing Committee, Gianna Despotopoulou, in her speech said: “The ‘Polis Amphitryon” is innovative in nature, as their purpose is not only the athletes know their culture and their local communities but rather to inform citizens of each region and initiated the voluntary knowing the specificity of these children. The special schools and do a great job but in life the child needs salt and pepper. We want to give him holding racing programs while providing them with stimuli. The presence of Metropolitan Chrysostomos clearly guarantee success. “

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