Olga Slutsker: I'm just bored of living only for myself

Olga Slutsker is a person who has already done a lot for the development of Russian sports. As a child, starting her sports career with figure skating, she very soon hung her skates on a nail and went into fencing. So Slutsker was imbued with an active lifestyle and a desire to win. Later, she stopped going out to competitions and fighting for titles, and became part of the World Class business empire.

In addition, Olga has been participating in the creation of socially significant projects for a long time. One of them is the Special Olympics of Russia , in which Slutsker became the new president. Together with a large team of employees from all over the world, the Special Olympics helps organize sports activities and competitions for people with intellectual disabilities.

Olga Slutsker: I'm just bored of living only for myself

Photo: Polina Inozemtseva, Championship

We met Olga at the Young Athlete event, which took place on September 21 at the Sokol stadium. On that day, young lovers of an active lifestyle, with whom the Special Olympics are engaged, were able to take part in fun starts along with ordinary children and stars of sports, cinema and television. There Olga shared her plans and ideas with the Championship, and also told what the nuances of promoting sports for a special category of people are.

- Olga, tell us why you started to engage in social activities?

- I am an active person. It seems to me that when you are doing any work and you succeed, it gives you satisfaction and authority, you want to share your experience.

At that moment, a man with a crying daughter passed by Olga and me. The girl was upset because something didn't work out for her in the competition.

- Oh, our baby is crying! Wait a second, we need help ... The main thing is that she does not leave without a gift. Well, here's the answer to your question. In life, of course, anything can happen: everyone has their own difficulties. But when you succeed, you want to give your knowledge, energy and ideas to other people. They may not even ask for it or expect help. This is my voluntary choice, it is conscious. Because I'm just bored of living only for myself, my family or my company, when I feel that I can give the world and people more.

- Were there moments when it seemed that in the conduct of which - Has the project hit its toughest? How did you fight despair?

- Of course you did. Every day we fail to do something the way we want. We love this word to fight, but you just have to exhale and think. I always tell my employees: Think with your head. After all, without awareness, nothing will work. Think about what is happening, what stalled you, how to get around it? Or maybe you don't have to go there at all. Look for yourself, don't get discouraged - life is wonderful. Look only at today's starts, at the children who have come, at their parents, at the smiles - it's harder for them, whym to us, do you understand? And they don't whine.

Olga Slutsker: I'm just bored of living only for myself

Photo: Polina Inozemtseva, Championship

- You recently became the President of the Russian Special Olympics. Tell us, what are the main tasks facing this organization now? Are there any plans and ideas that you would like to implement?

- The purpose of the organization is to make sure that branches of the Special Olympics work in all regions of our country. Moreover, they were not just open on paper, and I went to the Ministry of Sports to report, but that these were really working cells helping the people of the department. To do this, we must identify local leaders and help people with knowledge, conduct trainings for parents, for teachers of correctional institutions.

We dream of bringing big games of the Special Olympics to Russia. For example, 190 countries participated in the last Olympiad in Abu Dhabi. We want a huge number of states to visit our country, our wonderful sports facilities. And if not the Special Olympics, then the Unified Football Cup, which also brings together a large number of teams from all over the world. To keep the legacy alive, the very stadiums that remained after the World Cup. And the Special Olympics athletes would also have opportunities to compete in them.

- From a professional point of view, is it hard in Russia to work on popularizing sports in this segment?

- The Russian delegation is one of the largest, along with China and the United States. I would like to say that a huge and important path has been covered in 20 years. Of course, working on this in Russia is not easy, as it is in the rest of the world. In my opinion, we are only at the beginning of the road, when society does not just give money for competitions, but itself takes part. Today our stars and a whole team of MetLife employees came to support the children and their parents. They are actively participating in these unified competitions - this is already a step.

It is also not easy to work in the regions: some are more active, some are less. Some governors support us a lot, while some don't pay attention at all - and shame on them. In general, there is something to work on.

Olga Slutsker: I'm just bored of living only for myself

Photo: Polina Inozemtseva, Championship

- Do large commercial companies support work with the Special Olympics athletes?

- Yes, today these are foreign companies The Coca-Cola Company and MetLife. And among the Russians: Belaya Dacha and World Class. So far, we have not received support from major sports brands, but I have no doubt that later, with the help of the media, we will have such sponsors. Look, you, a huge portal that talks about sports, have also come today and are interested. We say thank you very much. It will be difficult for us to cover events without the press, without the interest of the media.

We do this not for ourselves and not for show, but for parents who have the courage to bring up such children and take on a huge responsibilityfor taking care of them. Therefore, it seems to me that today the whole world has the honor to help these people. Trust us is very important.

- What age groups does the Special Olympiad work with? Are there separate events for children or, on the contrary, for the elderly?

- It is great that people of any age can participate in the Special Olympiad program. There are no restrictions: even if you are 100 years old - please join! Athletes under 70 years old took part in the competition in Abu Dhabi. This humanistic movement enables people who find it more difficult than us to have an active, vibrant life. They have exactly the same right to this as we do from birth, which God gave them. And our task is to help them. You can't row everything just for yourself, it's real crap.

- What points are extremely important to consider when organizing events and competitions for persons with intellectual disabilities? Perhaps you need innovative equipment, specially trained trainers?

- Of course, you need specially trained trainers. We will be very active in this aspect. I remember how I developed the fitness industry back in the day. When we arrived, none of the professional instructors were there at all. Now we, together with the European office, are developing a training program. International specialists, whom we will invite to Russia, are also participating in the development. And if students, volunteers or coaches are interested in working with us - send applications and wishes to our site, we want to see you!

The equipment is the same as for training of ordinary athletes. In general, a very important part of the program is inclusion. That is, a competition when healthy children work in one team with our athletes.

Olga Slutsker: I'm just bored of living only for myself

Photo: Polina Inozemtseva, Championship

- Are there enough bases for training and various events in the framework of the Special Olympics?

- There are enough bases, but there are other problems. Somewhere, for example, they want to take persons with intellectual disabilities to sports schools, but on formal grounds they cannot do it. It is necessary to change, modernize the system in terms of these formalities. Unfortunately, in sports schools there is not enough time for classes with such children.

- And the final question. You have extensive experience in managing large public and business projects. For example, you participated in the development of Moscow longevity and are the creator of the World Class fitness center chain. How does the experience of working on similar projects help you now in leading the Special Olympiad?

- First of all, I am glad that the team responded to my new position. And the guys, the World Class instructors, will participate in the Special Olympiad programs.

Secondly, experience helps me organize my work, optimize the process of managing an organization. Now I plan to change a lot: I will modernize my approaches, make my office more mobilenym. For example, the site of the Special Olympics is not very informative at the moment. And this should be a resource that provides maximum information in a convenient format.

And, in the end, thanks to World Class. The team helps me a lot. At the same time, believe me, I didn't have to ask for help twice. The guys responded and came as volunteers on their free Saturday to take part in today's starts.

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