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Saturday, May 18, 2024
P10791 - Photo courtesy of the Rosati Family
  When Peter Novelletto was told he could not play soccer because of his disability, his father, Egidio, and friend, Vince Rosati, recognized a need to organize a soccer team for other children like Peter. When Peter was 12 years old, his father started the Italian Canadian Handicapable Association
P10791-Photo courtesy of the Rosati Family
  (ICHA), at Glengarda school. The Association gave disabled children the
chance to play soccer. As time went on, Egidio saw progress in the children, improvements in their self-esteem, and he began to offer more activities including track and field competitions, clogging and dance classes. In 1988, when the Special Olympics started, the ICHA was a participant, and, in 1998, they were the Ontario champions. The ICHA is involved in hosting an annual Special Olympic Indoor Soccer Tournament involving more than 400 participants who arrive from numerous localities throughout Ontario and Quebec, as well as the State of Michigan. The ICHA also offers scholarships to challenged students for use at St. Clair College and the University of Windsor.

Thanks to great contributions from local businessman Vince Rosati, the construction of the 50,000 sq. ft. sports and recreation complex was completed for the ICHA in 2002. The sports complex can accommodate soccer, baseball, rugby, lacrosse, field hockey, arena football and lawn bowling (in the spring and summer months) as well as providing convention and conference facilities and, of course, shuffleboard and boccia courts. The centre, run by the ICHA, is open to the general public.
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