Who We Are

Special Olympics is a global movement of people creating a new world of inclusion and community, where every single person is accepted and welcomed, regardless of ability or disability. We are helping to make the world a better, healthier and more joyful place -- one athlete, one volunteer, one family member at a time.


The People of Special Olympics

Words can take you far, but seeing the faces of the people of Special Olympics takes you to their world. Take a tour of the people of Special Olympics in a series of grand photos.  SEE IT ››


Our Athletes

Athletes are the heart of Special Olympics. Our athletes are children and adults with intellectual disabilities from all around the world. They are finding success, joy and friendship as part of our global community. They're also having lots of fun!  LEARN MORE ››


Our Volunteers

Our volunteers believe that sports has the power to create joy and unity in society. They know this because they've seen it happen again and again. They are coaches and trainers, officials, event organizers, fundraisers and managers. They are also unified partners -- playing alongside athletes with intellectual disabilities -- or fans cheering in the stands.  LEARN MORE ››


Our Coaches

Special Olympics coaches are role models and character builders. They teach the skills and spirit that define a true athlete. Every day and in every way, they help empower our athletes through quality sports training and competitions. Our coaches inspire our athletes; in turn, they are inspired as they witness the transformative power of sports.  LEARN MORE ››


Our Families

Families give our athletes the kind of love, support and encouragement that no one else can. Special Olympics is a support network that brings families together in a caring, positive way. Our growing family support network is also a successful force for acceptance and inclusion in communities all around the world.  LEARN MORE ››


Our Founder, Eunice Kennedy Shriver

Eunice Kennedy Shriver was a pioneer in the global struggle for rights and acceptance for people with intellectual disabilities. Eunice Kennedy Shriver believed in justice. But she saw little justice in the way people with intellectual disabilities were treated in the 1950s and 1960s -- and she decided to make a difference. Her revolutionary vision and programs changed the world.  LEARN MORE ››


Your Donation Matters

Special Olympics transforms athletes’ lives through the joy of sport. Help us make a difference.

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Volunteer Near You

Volunteering with Special Olympics is fun and very rewarding, for both the athlete and the volunteer!

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Find events near you and learn about volunteer opportunities at one of our 220 worldwide locations.

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Videos and Photos

DifferentBarry Cairns tells what it's like to be a Special Olympics athlete.Watch Video »


Videos and Photos

SpeechlessSpecial Olympics changed her life in deep and meaningful ways.Watch Video »


Videos and Photos

Summer GamesAround the world, months of practice are paying off.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Photos on FBSee photos and comments from our supporters around the world.See Photos »


Videos and Photos

Hope in HaitiLeo and Gedeon play in makeshift fields, tent towns, wherever they can.Watch Video »


Videos and Photos

Finding His VoiceDavid Egan has always dreamed big. Now look at him!Learn More »


Videos and Photos

Sport Teaches UsOur life-changing work is fueled by the power of sport.Watch Video »


Videos and Photos

Making SuccessDoctors said Lani is “never going to achieve anything.” Learn More »


Videos and Photos

Very Very SpecialMusic helps Special Olympics make an impact worldwide.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Around The WorldGreat photos of Special Olympics events and people.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Focus on ChangeWhat we do can't be done without our partners.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Power of SportsSports are a powerful way to change our athlete’s lives.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

What We DoSports, health, education, community and more.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Who We AreWe are athletes, families, celebs, volunteers and more.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Summer SportsOur athletes run, jump, swim and score in summer.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Playing UnifiedUnified Sports reveals strengths in every team member.Watch Video »


Videos and Photos

Healthier AthletesOur free health clinics are making a huge difference.Watch Video »


Videos and Photos

Deon NamisebHe's a speaker and role model. It didn't start that way in Namibia.Learn More »


Special Olympics Blog

Health Needs Need Closer Examination

"You can't compete if your feet hurt, if your teeth hurt or if your ears ache."read more »

Posted on 2014-04-07 by Ryan

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