Andrei Cupsa and his mother, Liliana
Andrei Cupsa and his mother, Liliana, stay busy. He's an athlete and a trainer. She's a dentist and a Special Olympics clinical director.View Story ▼Andrei Cupsa and his mother, Liliana, lead full lives. Liliana, a single parent, has a dental practice in Baia-Mare, Romania and is the Health Promotion Clinical Director for Special Olympics Romania. Andrei, 21, who became a Special Olympics athlete when he was 14, is a Young Athletes trainer for a group of eight children he works with every Tuesday. He also volunteers every day at a day care center for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Andrei finds time to train four times a week in swimming and fitness. If that’s not enough activity, he skis, rides horses and helps around the house. An only child, Andrei spends summers with his grandfather in the countryside where they engage in what his mother called “manly pursuits.” When he started as a Young Athletes trainer earlier this year Andrei wasn’t sure how the children would react. But the children soon came to love him as he took them by the hand and guided them through the routines. “We all move together,” he said, describing his approach as relaxed. His easy-going attitude works at the day-care center too where children who do not want to go to speech therapy go willingly if Andrei takes them. Andrei graduated from an inclusive private school where his mother was very active, ensuring that other students and parents were accepting of her son. “Andrei grew up to be self-confident and capable. He is a role model for other children with intellectual disabilities and their parents,” said Liliana.
About By Martha Jo Braycich:Martha Jo Braycich is Senior Director, Community Impact Initiatives, Special Olympics Europe-Eurasia.View less ▲