Kathleen Bates

Kathleen Bates

Senior Special Needs Aquatic Specialist at the Ability Friendly Program

Community | Accessibility in sports | Coaching | Community Engagement | Community Development | Sports for Social Progress
AffiliationAbility Friendly Program

Kathleen Bates is a Senior Special Needs Aquatic Specialist at Qatar Foundation’s Ability Friendly Program. She coaches swimming and specializes in developing and implementing sports and community-based programs for people with disabilities.

Bates joined Qatar Foundation and began the Ability Friendly Program in 2018, where she designed the first specialized sports programs targeting the community with special needs.

She created and implemented the first Ability Friendly Aquatics program and formed partnerships with specialized special needs schools, centers, and international training agencies to further advance the Ability Friendly Program.

The initiative supports sporting and development activities for people of all abilities. The swimming and football programs are offered to participants who are visually or hearing impaired, have mobility impairments, have Autism or learning difficulties, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, or other conditions.

Upon winning the “World of Difference” Award in 2012, Bates founded Freestyle Aquatics. She is also a scuba diving instructor.

Bates hold a Bachelor of Arts in Recreation and Leisure Facilities Management.