Special Olympics has partnered Microsoft and Xbox to organise a gaming tournament on May 30 and fans can watch livestreamed Forza Motorsport 7 racing on Mixer, Xbox YouTube or Twitch. There will be a first-ever Special Olympics award ceremony on gaming platform Minecraft.
"We're partnering with the Special Olympics to keep athletes connected and maintain the joy of sports, using the power of Xbox," Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella tweeted.
Special Olympics is the world's largest sports organisation for children and adults with intellectual disabilities and physical disabilities, providing year-round training and activities to 5 million participants and Unified Sports partners in 172 countries.
Phil Spencer, Head of Xbox, said it is a great partnership with the amazing team at Special Olympics to bring gaming to the 2020 Special Olympics. "Incredibly proud of all the teams that are making this possible and can't wait to see the Olympians running some fast laps," he said.
Back in 2018, Xbox hosted the first video gaming tournament at a Special Olympics event during Special Olympics USA Games held in Seattle, Washington. "This year, Microsoft and Special Olympics are teaming up for the 2020 Special Olympics Xbox Virtual Gaming Event featuring Turn 10 Studios' Forza Motorsport 7," said the company.
Eleven US states will be represented in this year's event with over 35 athletes participating. Microsoft and Special Olympics have been working together since 2014 with the goal of empowering Special Olympics athletes and programmes through technology.
Throughout the partnership, technologies such as Xbox and Microsoft Teams have been tools to bring adults and children with intellectual disabilities together in the face of a host of obstacles.