Today UTS and IFMA opened their office doors to welcome musician Al Prado and his special student Wille Varach. Young adults with different abilities are often excluded in society and face discrimination. This population are largely misunderstood where the general public lack understanding and awareness. Oftentimes there is a lack of facilities and opportunities for these young adults largely due to a lack of adequate policies and legislation.

Every child has the right to opportunity and for this reason, UTS and IFMA teamed up for the SportAccord Convention 2018 in Bangkok and held a 4-day festival, where young adults from Thailand such as Wille had the opportunity to perform their talents regardless to sport, music or art before the leaders of the sporting world and the Thai public.

An integral aspect of the festival themed “United Through Sports” was the inclusion of every body regardless to ability, race, religion or gender. The opening ceremony showcased over 100 youths from across the globe. During the ceremony, Wille who has been working with Mr. Prado for over a year demonstrated his talent as a budding drummer. Wille’s performance had the leaders of sport and the hundreds of spectators in the audience on their feet dancing and singing.

Al Prado who teaches over 200 youths at the Siam Saam Tri School in Bangkok spoke with UTS coordinator Abinhay stating “ It has been an amazing opportunity for young students like Wille to be able to perform in such a special event. We can only hope that society will take more initiative to hold more events for this marginalised group. UTS and IFMA are taking down the walls that have kept these youths on the outskirts of society and I want to thank the IFMA and UTS family for opening the doors for children with disabilities”.

An excited Wille highlighted his views on the event “ For me the performance was fun, fun, fun! It was the biggest and best show I ever did. Everyone was friendly, and I enjoyed playing with the band”. Wille’s new-found confidence has led him since to invite IFMA and UTS to join him for his next show in December.

United Through Sports is working to mainstream societal perspectives of disability working with the sporting world, they seek to develop equality and provide opportunity for all. This approach serves to benefit not only the youth but the understanding, approach and development of better service to these youths. Together we can do so much more!

Muaythai has a philosophy and a slogan “Muaythai for Every Body and that everyone should have the right to equal opportunities and showcase their own excellence without discrimination”.

SportAccord Convention 2018 has set a new bench-mark and left many smiling faces behind and with the generous donations made, many more smiling faces to come. Thank you to all the people who played a part in this event.