國際奧會有4個奧運家族（Olympic Family）：奧運、聽障奧運、殘障奧運、特殊奧運。其中，聽障奧林匹克運動會（Deaflympics，簡稱聽障奧運）的前身是世界聾人運動會（Deaf World Games），始辦於1924年，為全球最早舉辦的身心障礙類運動會，每4年舉辦夏季聽障奧運會，迄今已舉辦過20屆，2009年將在台北進行第21屆競賽。
One of the major IOC-sanctioned sporting events, the Deaflympics will be taking place in Taipei this year. In occasion of this international sport event, Taipei City Government RDEC Chairman and Taipei Deaflympics Organising Committee CEO Dr. Emile C.J. Sheng has expressed that we need to let the world know about the Taipei Deaflympics and let the people of Taiwan know about the Deaflympics spirit.
Dr Sheng states that the Deaflympics is not just a sporting competition; all of the participating athletes have some form of hearing disability, and each one of them come with a unique story of how they overcame their obstacles and made it to where they are today; we can all learn from their stories.
Dr. Sheng gives as an example one of the star athletes of the Chinese Taipei delegation, An Ching-Lung. Mr. An lost his hearing at the age of 10 due to fever; he originally wanted to become a car mechanic, but because of his hearing disability, he couldn't even tell the sound an engine makes. In the end, he had to abandon his dream.
Mr. An, though, did not yield to the setback; he later decided to become an athlete. People with hearing disabilities usually have poor sense of balance, but Mr. An, through perseverance, was able to clear the obstacles and finally shine on the sport field. He won 10 gold medals at the Rome Deaflympics, and later won the silver in Melbourne.
Dr. Sheng points out that this is a fine example of the Deaflympics spirit, and that this spirit is exactly what Taiwan, which is suffering from an economic recession right now, needs in order to break out from the current situation.
In preparation for the Games, the Taipei Municipal Stadium, which will serve both as the location for the opening ceremony and as the main venue, is currently undergoing renovation. Dr. Sheng says that in occasion of the Games, Taipei City Government will be holding a series of events beginning in March, starting with the revealing event for the theme song of this year's Deaflympics.
In May, there will be a building art exhibition and parade; in August, artists including the Blue Man Group and the famous Chinese deaf performance group “Thousand-Hand Guanyin” will be performing. There is a lot to look forward to before this year's Deaflympics!
資料來源Youtube: 2009聽障奧運在台北 Deaflympics Taipei 2009 - 千手觀音