The Special Olympics Movement unlocks the joy of sport to inspire people throughout the world – to open their minds to human giftedness, to accept, include and value people with intellectual disabilities in all aspects of life, and thereby unite people in a shared belief of a more just and welcoming world.
There are about 200 million people with intellectual disabilities around the world. Our goal is to reach out to every one of them – and their families as well.
Special Olympics does this through a wide range of trainings, competitions, health screenings and fund-raising events. We also create opportunities for families, community members, local leaders, businesses, law enforcement, celebrities, dignitaries and others to band together to change attitudes and support athletes.
Special Olympics creates communities of support everywhere it goes. We hold 50,000 competitions a year — about 136 each day. Our Games and competitions bring together athletes, coaches, volunteers, supporters and leaders of the community.
Special Olympics has the support of governments worldwide. We have helped bring about policies to improve education, health care, and employment opportunities for people with intellectual disabilities all around the world. Some of our key program efforts to build communities include: Athlete Leadership Programs, Family Engagement, Healthy Athletes, Project UNIFY and Young Athletes.