Special Olympics Ontario recently received an inspiring note from a teacher named Stephanie who works at Glebe Collegiate in Ottawa.

Stephanie wanted to say thank you to Special Olympics Ontario for helping to bring Unified Sports to her high school. She leads a team of 10 athletes with intellectual disabilities as well as 27 unified partners who together participated at the Invitational Youth Games last May.

“The Youth Games was an exciting opportunity that motivated the athletes to try their best. It also shone a light on Special Olympics in a way that was inspiring for school community and beyond!”

– Stephanie, Glebe Collegiate Teacher and Special Olympics Coach

It’s amazing to know that we have such an incredible family of donors who are making success like this possible for athletes all over Ontario. Together, we are helping schools like Glebe Collegiate to see that every athlete deserves the opportunity to demonstrate their value and be recognized for it.

Thank you for helping Special Olympics Ontario stand up for inclusion in sport.

I hope that you will take a moment this holiday season to send a gift in support of Special Olympics. Your generosity allows incredible athletes all over our province to make new friends, push themselves further, and experience the thrill of competition.

For Stephanie’s school, Unified Sports has been a platform that has sparked dialogues about inclusion in all aspects of life. By seeing the ways that all students can work together to succeed, students and staff have undertaken discussions about how to further break down barriers between students.

This has led to authentic new relationships based on mutual respect, common interests, and a genuine desire to spend time together. Each of the new friendships formed through Unified Sport is special, as they signify the value of diversity in heartwarming ways.

According to Stephanie, the Unified Sport team at her school has tripled in size since last year and is now known as the place where sports is the point and anyone is welcome!”

Stephanie sees Unified Sports as the game-changer her school needed to begin changing the world. YOU are playing an important role in these changes by supporting Special Olympics Ontario and helping to create sports programs that are engaging young people in communities all across our province.

Please take a moment to give the gift of sport and inclusion this holiday season, so that more athletes across the province can benefit from the joy of being part of a team.

I’m always thrilled to hear from teachers and coaches like Stephanie. It lets me know that we’re on the right track with our programs, and most importantly, that your support is making a difference in athlete’s lives.

Whether they play basketball, bocce, floor hockey, soccer or any other sport, the end result is the same – healthy bodies, joyful hearts and lasting human connection.

Thanks again for helping promote a vision of inclusion and acceptance that is changing so many lives, and best wishes this holiday season.

Glenn MacDonell
President and CEO, Special Olympics Ontario