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Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates — Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates and official airline partner of Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019, encourages members of its Etihad Guest loyalty programme to donate their frequent flyer miles to help support athletes with intellectual disabilities attending the Games.  

The cost to fund a single athlete’s participation in the World Games is approximately AED 25,000. Generous donations from Etihad Guest members will go directly to helping athletes from all over the world to fulfil their ambitions of competing on a global stage.

YasserAl Yousuf, Etihad Airways Vice President Commercial Partnerships, said: “Etihad’s valued partnership with Special Olympics World Games is a major element of our extensive global programme of social activities. We have a responsibility to support those of determination in realising their dreams and their true potential and we are continuously exploring new ways in which to play a more impactful role.

“Many of our guests have also expressed a keen interest in having the opportunity to make a difference. This donation programme will allow them to do just that, and we thank them for their generosity.”

As part of the airline’s contribution, for every new Etihad Guest enrollment on www.etihadguest.com/sowg between now and 21 March 2019, Etihad Airways will automatically donate 500 miles to Special Olympics on their behalf. An additional 500 miles will be awarded to new members once their first flight with the airline has been taken.

Existing members wishing to contribute can visit www.etihadguest.com to donate miles, to help athletes on and off the field, supporting accommodation, food, transport, special events and dedicated facilities at the World Games.

Taking place in the Middle East and North Africa region for the first time, this year’s Special Olympics World Games are expected to attract up to 500,000 spectators and will be the largest global event ever to be held in the UAE’s capital.

Bringing together more than 7,500 athletes from over 190 nations, Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 is the largest sports and humanitarian event on the planet this year.

Etihad Airways will ferry athletes, equipment, coaches, dignitaries, and media to Abu Dhabi for the event. The athletes will be accompanied by 2,500 coaches and delegates.

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