That record of success and benefit led United States businessman and philanthropist Tom Golisano to commit $12 million to expand Special Olympics’ health-related services and launch a new Healthy Communities initiative in 2012. The initiative stresses a community-based year-round approach to health for our athletes. Since its launch, Healthy Communities initiative has resulted in health clinics in 54 new locations, providing care for more than 11,000 more athletes with intellectual disabilities, and health education for nearly 10,000 athletes, family members and coaches.
The Special Olympics Healthy Communities initiative takes the principles of the Healthy Athletes program and expands them from a series of single events to a steady presence in the lives of our athletes and their families. Special Olympics has major offices in 170 countries around the world. Healthy Communities is being launched in seven countries (Mexico, Peru, Romania, Malawi, South Africa, Malaysia, and Thailand) and six U.S. states (Arizona, Florida, Kansas, New Jersey, Wisconsin and New York). Healthy Athletes has provided free health screenings and products to athletes for 15 years.