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Smithers local Torben Schuffert is named a B.C. Champion of Inclusion Ambassador for Special Olympics Canada

Smithers Interior News - 1/28/2022

Local Special Olympics athlete, and newly appointed Champion of Inclusion Ambassador Torben Schuffert is partnering with Tim Hortons to raise funds for Special Olympics Canada from Jan. 28 to 30 in Smithers.

Tim Hortons is continuing its partnership with Special Olympics Canada by launching a limited edition #ChooseToInclude doughnut on sale from Jan. 28 - 30.

Individuals with an intellectual disability have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic, according to the local Special Olympics Committee, and being away from their in-person programs has meant being away from their friends, their healthy activity and their network of support.

In order to continue to celebrate inclusion within communities across the country, local Champions of Inclusion have been recognized for their efforts to lead by example regardless of differences such as age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation or mental or physical disabilities.

Proceeds raised through sales will be donated to Special Olympics Canada to raise awareness and empower its 41,200 athletes to reach their full potential in sport and in life, and every #ChoosetoInclude doughnut sold will help Special Olympics athletes return to the playing field.

Schuffert is a dedicated athlete who competed in the 2020 Special Olympics Canada Winter Games in snowshoeing, and has become an active participant in Special Olympics virtual events such as health education sessions, leadership programs and weekly dance workout groups.

Schuffert keeps active working at the Smithers Feed Store twice a week and by swimming, running, cross country skiing and snowshoeing.

He switches up his routine by working out on his treadmill, playing guitar and he enjoys cooking with his friends online.

Even though he has kept busy during the pandemic, he says it has been a difficult time not meeting in-person with everyone, but has anywhere between four and 50 people he meets with online from all over B.C. each week.

"It has made a big difference, to keep in touch with people and do things together online so no one feels alone," Schuffert said.

"My friends and I have a lot of fun cooking and now learning the guitar."

Looking forward, Torben will continue competing in snowshoeing, but would also like to train for powerlifting and one day compete in that sport.

"I want to show people you can have a dream, and become a success no matter what challenges you may have."