Special Olympics GB is delighted to announce the formation of its first ever Athlete Input Council (AIC). The Athlete Input Council will be a platform to gather feedback from Special Olympics athletes across Great Britain on their experiences of SOGB’s training programme and competitions: what can be improved – and the athletes’ ideas going forward.

The Special Olympics GB AIC has been designed by the initial 15 athletes who were selected for the SOGB Athlete Leadership Programme, which has been meeting and growing over the last year.

The Leadership Programme has been generously supported by Bank of America and also their employees – who have acted as mentors to Special Olympics GB athletes throughout the process.

Special Olympics GB athlete, and also the first newly appointed Chairman of the SOGB Athlete Input Council, Ian Harper said: “This is a great time for all Special Olympics GB athletes. Special Olympics GB athletes Kiera, Katie, Matthew, Fleur, Greg and myself are the first council members and fellow SOGB athletes Georgina, Niall, Lynne, Sam, Paul, Jordan and Ben will become the first members of the Research and Information team.”

Ian added: “I can also confirm that athletes, Kiera Byland and Katie Day will be appointed as Vice-Chair and Secretary of the Special Olympics GB Athlete Input Council respectively.

As individuals we have been able to grow through the Athlete Leadership Programme which has been complimented by our mentors from Bank of America. On behalf of all our athletes, I want to thank Bank of America for giving us so much support over the past year and I hope this will continue.

I also want to thank all Special Olympics GB athletes’ parents and carers for taking us to these Athlete Leadership events to enable us to build this new Athlete Leadership Council.”

Chris Hull, of Special Olympics Great Britain, welcomed the new initiative and said: “It is such wonderful news that SOGB has established its first ever Athlete Input Council. It is a great accolade for all the hard work that has been put in by the members of the Athlete Leadership Programme this year. The Athlete Input Council will also help us to get feedback from our athletes on their experiences of our training and competition including all of the athletes who recently went to our National Games in Sheffield. It is important to ensure we get feedback from Special Olympics athletes on what they enjoyed, what could be improved and any ideas they have for the future events. We are looking forward to working with the Council and hearing more about its plans for the future.”

Find out more here: www.specialolympicsgb.org.uk or follow Special Olympics GB on Twitter: @SOGreatBritain