The 2016 Paralympic Games are set to kick off in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, starting September 7. But this year, the international multi-sport event for athletes with disabilities will feature a new accessibility innovation - specially designed medals that facilitate their identification for the visually impaired.
Photo Credit: www.rio2016.com/Alex Ferro
A New Look, Feel, And Sound
The Rio Paralympic attractive, new medals were created with both accessibility and environmental sustainability in mind. For the first time, they are no longer flat, but slightly raised in the centre, tapering gently to the sides and featuring a cascade of seed engravings to symbolize persistence, courage, and development.
A total of 2,642 medals will be awarded, each one with 'Rio 2016 Paralympic Games' written on them in Braille. Each of the 500g medals also has tiny steel balls inside that can be heard when shaken, making it easy to quickly identify the medal's colour. Gold contains the most balls, 28, and makes the loudest sound, while silver has 20 balls and bronze has 16.
The medals also comply with strict sustainability standards, from mining through to design and production. The initiatives include gold extracted without using mercury, silver, bronze and ribbons made with high percentages of recycled materials and attractive wood casings for the medals taken from freijó wood certified by Forest Stewardship Council.
A Range Of Exciting Sporting Events
This year, the event's organizers are expecting to break all previous TV viewing records as the over 4,300 athletes from 170 countries compete in 22 different sports. Events run the gamut of athletic skill and ability, with an amazing range of competitions that are sure to bring excitement, emotion, and inspiration to all - equestrian, fencing, tennis, rowing, football, para-triathlon, track and field and more.
Alongside Canadian Paralympic gold medalist Laura Barwick, Gluckstein Injury Lawyers founder Bernard Gluckstein became a Disability Hall of Fame Inductee in 2015. He and the other lawyers at the firm will be cheering on the stellar efforts and achievements of paralympic athletes in this year's Games.
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