By Duncan Mackay

Olesya Vladykina in front of Sochi 2014 logoNovember 27 - Sochi 2014 have won a Russian "internet Oscar" for its revolutionary Accessibility Map for disabled people. 

Officials picked up the Runet Award - which celebrates advances in technology and the internet - in the category of Health, Entertainment and Leisure.

The project was launched on October 23, 500 days before the Paralympics are due to open in Sochi, and was up against a number of nominees in the field of sports information, video hosting, translation services and services for young mothers.

The award was accepted by Sochi 2014 Ambassador and double Paralympic swimming champion, Olesya Vladykina, at the award ceremony in Moscow.

The Map is designed to find places locally where they can practice sport in a barrier-free environment.

Accessibility Map Sochi 2014The Sochi 2014 Accessibility Map is helping to revolutionise the lives of disabled Russians

Since the project's launch more than 1,250 venues across Russia have been added to the map.

"The main objective of the project's organisers is to move further towards creating a barrier free environment," said Vladykina, who won gold medals in the SB8 100 metres backstroke and 100m breastroke at London 2012.

"As we draw closer to the Paralympic Games in Sochi, we have a real chance to get the whole country involved in helping change our society's attitudes towards people with disabilities.

"I'm grateful to everyone who is supporting the 'Accessibility Map' project, and to everyone who voted for it."

Sochi 2014 will be the first time the Paralympics have ever been held in Russia and the Map is seen as a powerful social tool that will act as a legacy after the Games are finished.

"Each day there are new accessible venues being added to the map and we are determined that our efforts to promote the Paralympic venues will be a step towards changing society's attitudes towards people with disabilities," said Dmitry Chernyshenko, the President and chief executive of Sochi 2014.

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