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Sochi 2014 Marks 500 Days To Paralympic Games

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It's 500 days until the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Games begin March 7, 2014, and to celebrate this milestone Sochi 2014 volunteers have located and placed 500 accessible venues from dozens of Russian cites on an Accessibility Map.

The launch of the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Education School Program was marked with the opening of an Equal Opportunities Park and with an "outstanding" "Class Mira" Theatre musical, and Paralympic lessons across Russia.

The new Accessibility Map website was presented and demonstrated to guests gathered at the Park via a big screen by Sochi 2014 President Dmitry Chernyshenko, the General Secretary of the RPC Mikhail Terentiev, and Sochi 2014 volunteers.

A video version of the "London 2012-Sochi 2014" lesson was uploaded Tuesday on the official Sochi 2014 website. The video was shot at the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee's Moscow office on September 1, the first days of the Paralympic Games in London, and included Russia's Paralympic athletes.

Sir Philip Craven, International Paralympic Committee (IPC) President said, "I am delighted that to mark 500 days to go until the Winter Games, Sochi 2014 is launching the innovative accessibility map. This project will help generate awareness across Russia of accessible facilities and is a project that, with the help and support of the IPC, could act as a blueprint for other countries to follow. Planning for the launch of this project started some time ago under the supervision of the IPC and I am pleased to see it come to fruition to mark 500 days to go".

Chernyshenko said, "in 2014 Sochi will host the first Paralympic Games in the history of Russia. I am sure that the high accessibility standards that will have been set in the Olympic region by 2014 will be needed in other cities across the country, and our efforts in passionately promoting the Paralympic values will help to remove the 'barriers' in society towards people with a disability forever".

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