Special Olympics has been an important program for my family since we joined them in 2011. Most of you know that my daughter Natalie had a pediatric stroke, and as a result has an intellectual delay. Angela and I have always looked for programs that engage, promote active lifestyles and are inclusive. We’ve found that Special Olympics is more than competition for athletes with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD).
It’s a movement FOR EVERYONE that teaches what it means to be inclusive, that builds stronger minds and bodies, that builds relationships and understanding, and develops leadership skills.
Talk to an athlete and they will share their story; but talk to a Unified Partner, or a Coach, or a Parent, or a Student Body Officer or a School Counselor, or a Volunteer for Special Olympics and you will only begin to hear how much this program does.
Natalie has been an athlete, she has carried the torch, she is a global ambassador, she participates in Youth Leadership Exchanges, and Youth Activation Committees. She is an athlete ambassador who volunteers at fundraisers and events, she speaks at schools and functions about the importance of inclusion and the Unified Champion Schools program, and she knows that she is a leader-in-the-present who can drive change by being herself and advocating for others, at any time, and at any place.
All of this became a reality through Special Olympics. Many of these programs are supported through government grants. Please support this organization. Know that they are making positive change happen every day. I invite you to be part of this #InclusionRevolution.