This holiday season, Special Olympics athletes across the province are looking ahead to a brighter 2023, returning to in-person sports and programs. With your support, you will be helping to empower athlete dreams and get them back to the playing field.
Your donations change lives for athletes like Alma, who was born with Williams Syndrome—a developmental disorder that affects many parts of the body and causes an intellectual disability. When Alma first started with Special Olympics Ontario at the age of 2, she was still using a walker to get around. Participating in sports programs helped her develop her strength and motor skills, and build confidence. Alma's mom recently sent in this update about her progress:
“I want to share two things related to Special Olympics that have made me cry happy tears in the past month. First, because of Special Olympics participation in the TCDSB City Cross Country finals, Alma was able to be part of her cross-country club at school. It’s her first intramural activity and she was so excited to run with the kids at lunch time to train.
She lined up with all the grade 3/4 girls in the Special Olympics cohort, and as soon as they said GO she streaked across the field with the biggest grin on her face. The rest of her teammates who had qualified for the finals cheered her on from the sidelines and it was simply incredible.
I want to thank you for the time and effort you put into what might seem like a pain to show up to every year. For the 2 or 3 minutes on that field, she was just another kid at a cross country meet. She is very excited to be back on her school team for Track in the spring. Thanks to your whole team for showing up for every kid who was in her category that day.
Second, Alma has started Special Olympics Figure Skating and she loves it. She’s now had two classes. She is hooked!”
Participating in our Active Start Program from the age of 2 and then transitioning into school programs has helped Alma go from needing assistance to walk, to running with her peers and even skating. None of this would be possible without your contributions, which truly do change lives.
Alma and other school-based athletes still need your help. Often when they leave school they lose touch with valuable Special Olympics programming. Your support helps us create a bridge from the school programs to our community programs, available to youth and adults of all ages.
Please support us today as we continue to ensure thousands of athletes like Alma not only step on the bridge, but cross the bridge to the other side with courage and confidence knowing that each and every day their accomplishments change attitudes and create a more inclusive society.
You can be the difference. Your donation counts!
To make a donation to Special Olympics Ontario, please click here.