The brother and sister duo, Noel Mascarenhas and Diana Mascarenhas marked their entry into the World Games 2019 at an event supported by Hasbro Inc. in Mumbai. They participated in Football and Athletics, beginning a journey that took them through a series of practises and Camps which ultimately saw their participation at the Special Olympics World Summer Games 2019 Abu Dhabi, UAE
Noel represented SO Bharat at the World Games in football. While the path was clear for Noel, his sister Diana also a special athlete, hesitated to kick but was observed to be throwing the ball quite well, against the wall. Her school, Canossa Special School, Mahim, Mumbai, added her into the Handball team & following training sessions she was selected for the World Games in the sport. Noel and Diana were placed under the guidance of the SO Bharat – Maharashtra Coaches Archie Dais and Bharati Varade respectively. Both participated in the tournaments held in Football and Handball in February 2019 which granted them another opportunity to face competition
Noel & Diana come from a poor but a happy and contented family ever willing to support both their Special children. They have an older brother who plays football regularly. Even today they recall vividly their utter disbelief in the fact that two of their children were special. When the mainstream that the children were in asked them to leave , they were shocked and could not understand why. They then went to the church for help. There they were counselled and were helped with admission of both their children at the Canossa Special School.
Their parents are always willing to take them for practice whenever required. Their father is a watchman & caretaker of a garden while their mother is a domestic help at the local church. All five members of the family stay in a Chawl (one room house)
“We never expected anything from these two children as they are special but now we know that if they get a chance to learn & practice they also can do something “,said their father Mr. IVAN MASCARENHAS
“We thank god for letting them travel by plane (at least someone from our family will go) & to see a new country” added her mother MRS. LOVIZA MASCARENHAS
The atmosphere was that of a festival as Noel and Diana returned from the World Games 2019 . They were joined by their neighbors in celebration of the medals won by both.