Special Olympics Florida

Unified Sports

Finishing Strong

Posted on December 22, 2016 | Posted in Athlete LeadershipCompetitionGivingHealth ProgramsIntellectual DisabilitiesLittle ElitesSportsUnified Champion SchoolsUnified SportsYoung Athletes

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As December 31st draws near, it is clear this has been a year of transformational impact for Special Olympics Florida.  Our athletes are succeeding on and off the playing field and have a bigger stage than ever to showcase their abilities.  Here are just a few of the highlights from 2016.

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Defining Success

Posted on November 29, 2016 | Posted in CompetitionSportsUnified Sports

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In sports, success is often judged by an individual’s or team’s win record, but we believe that everyone is a winner at Special Olympics Florida. Athletes who train hard for competition and come away with a gold medal or trophy should be given the credit they are due, but we must also celebrate that success doesn’t necessarily mean taking home a win for everyone.

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The Best Day Ever

Posted on September 2, 2016 | Posted in Play UnifiedSportsUnified Sports

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These last couple of weeks have brought some of the most amazing experiences of my life. I was given the opportunity to be a part of the Orlando City Soccer Club Special Olympics Unified team, and I was selected, alongside my teammate Cesar Aponte, to represent Orlando City in the MLS Works/Special Olympics Unified Sports All-Star Soccer Match. This experience included being flown out to both San Jose and Chicago, fully decked out in Orlando City gear, to compete with partners and athletes representing different delegations from all around the country.

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Special Olympics rally people of all abilities

Posted on August 22, 2016 | Posted in Play UnifiedSportsUnified Sports

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All eyes have been glued to Rio for the past two weeks. Both the U.S. men’s and women’s 4×100-meter swimming medley relay teams won the gold medal in the 2016 Summer Olympics. The medley relay race perfectly exemplifies the power of uniting athletes’ unique strengths to achieve more than any one person could by him or herself.

As the president and CEO of Special Olympics Florida, I have been able to witness a movement growing here in Florida and throughout the world through Special Olympics Unified Sports. As in the swimming medley, Special Olympics Florida is bringing together athletes of diverse abilities to bring about incredible change. Read More »

Play Unified. Live Unified.

Posted on July 6, 2016 | Posted in Play UnifiedUnified Champion SchoolsUnified Sports

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Dedicated to promoting social inclusion through shared sports training and competition experiences, Unified Sports joins people with and without intellectual disabilities on the same team and playing field. It was inspired by a simple principle: training together and playing together is a quick path to friendship and understanding.

Last month, Special Olympics Florida held its second Youth Summit at the University of South Florida. The Youth Summit provides Special Olympics Florida athletes and Unified partners the opportunity to enhance their leadership skills, learn inclusionary tools, and have an overall fun weekend together. Read More »