Los Angeles 2015

The 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles will feature summer sports such as athletics and swimming among teams from all corners of the earth. Mohamed Gaballa, a Special Olympics swimmer from Egypt, aspires to compete in Los Angeles next year.

The 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games open on 25 July 2015 in  Los Angeles, California. The 2015  Games will feature competitions in aquatics, gymnastics, track and field, basketball, football (soccer) and many other summer sports involving 7,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities from around the world.

Quick Facts

  • The 2015 Games will be the 14th Special Olympics World Summer Games. 
  • The Games are scheduled for 25 July to 2 August 2015 
  • LA 2015 will mark the first World Summer Games held in the U.S. in 16 years. 
  • The LA2015 website is at www.LA2015.org
  • Volunteers are needed. Here's how.

California, Here We Come

Los Angeles is set to welcome more than 7,000 Special Olympics athletes from 170 nations to compete in 25 Olympic-type sports.  It's a world stage for our athletes to demonstrate on the playing field their courage, determination and spirit of sportsmanship.

The most recent World Summer Games were in Athens, Greece in 2011. The 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games could bring as many as a half-million people to the greater Los Angeles area from 25 July to 2 August 2015. The Special Olympics World Summer Games will return to the United States after 16 years, having last been held in the United States in 1999 in Raleigh, North Carolina. 

“These Games will change the lives of people around the world who are mistreated and excluded because they’re ‘different,’”  said Patrick McClenahan, President and Chief Executive Officer of LA2015, the Games Organizing Committee.


LA 2015 Sports

  • Aquatics
  • Athletics
  • Badminton
  • Basketball
  • Beach Volleyball
  • Basketball
  • Bocce
  • Bowling
  • Cycling
  • Equestrian
  • Football (Soccer)
  • Golf
  • Gymnastics
  • Judo
  • Kayaking
  • Open Water Swim
  • Powerlifting
  • Rollerskating
  • Sailing
  • Table Tennis
  • Team Handball
  • Tennis
  • Triathlon
  • Softball
  • Volleyball

Changing Attitudes

The Games also are a chance for spectators and volunteers to have their preconceptions about people with intellectual disabilities changed forever. Getting involved with the Games by cheering from the stands or handing out cups of water to thirsty athletes is a sure way to change your view of people of all kinds.

Special Olympics World Games -- and all of the 80,000 Special Olympics competitions that occur every year--invite the public to see the talents and capabilities of people with intellectual disabilities. It's a way to open eyes, to change attitudes and to break down barriers that excluded people with ID from the mainstream of community.

The Los Angeles Games will also provide a venue for global discussions and action on the impact Special Olympics can have on the lives of people with intellectual disabilities. More than 200 million people worldwide have an intellectual disability, making it the largest disability group worldwide. Intellectual disability crosses racial, ethnic, educational, social and economic lines, and can occur in any family.

Volunteers and supporters are also essential to make the World Games a success. To apply to be one of the 30,000 volunteers for the World Games please visit: www.LA2015.org/volunteer. To help raise funds to cover costs associated with the visiting athletes, please visit support.la2015.org. For more information about the World Games, please visit www.LA2015.org/one-year-away and on social with #TheWorldisComing on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. 


Stories about the 2015 Games


September 05, 2014 | SOI General: Headquarters

Avril Lavigne Supporting Special Olympics

By Christy White

Help Avril Lavigne support Special Olympics for her birthday.

Multi-platinum recording artist, Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter and philanthropist Avril Lavigne, has teamed up with CrowdRise, an online fundraising platform, to support Special Olympics.View Story Multi-platinum recording artist, Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter and philanthropist Avril Lavigne, has teamed up with CrowdRise, an online fundraising platform, to support Special Olympics. Proceeds from the "Team Rockstar" campaign, which launches today, will sponsor athletes competing in the 2015 Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles. Read the press release below.

About Christy White:I am the Director of Media and Public Relations for Special Olympics.
Share
View less ▲

September 03, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Ukraine

Despite the war Ukraine will participate in the 2015 Special Olympics World Games

By Elena Luzhanovskaya

Now in our wonderful Ukraine we are at war and have sadly already lost one of our most experienced trainer. The Ukrainian team for the Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles will consist of 16 athletes, but we would like to bring 260.View Story Special Olympics Ukraine is an organisation of over 19 000 athletes in most of the regions of Ukraine. However, this number is but a fraction of the 1 million people or so with intellectual disabilities that live here today. Most of them are isolated from society, face discrimination and do not have access to social institutions. You rarely see people with intellectual disabilities in public places in Ukraine. As a result, most of them spend their whole life without the opportunity to develop their skills and realize their potential and for most citizens they are a forgotten people. Participation in the activities of Special Olympics is vitally important to our society. We need to change the social stereotypes of the past so that people with intellectual difficulties can show their strengths, their heartfelt character and contribute to our society. The Ukrainian team for the World Special Olympic Games in Los Angles will consist of 16 athletes, we would like to bring 260… Each of our athletes has a history of success. Each of them is training hard and want to prove to themselves, their families and friends that they are brave, strong and able to change their lives. 

About Elena Luzhanovskaya:
Share
View less ▲

August 19, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Great Britain

Conner and Comaneci: Volunteer Heroes

By Chris Hull

Bart Conner and Nadia Comaneci pose with gymnasts from Special Olympics Great Britain.

Hannah Westerman is going to represent Great Britain at the next Special Olympics World Games. Imagine her reaction when she found out she would meet Olympic gymnastics legend Nadia Comaneci.View Story Hannah Westerman is going to represent Great Britain at the next Special Olympics World Games. Imagine her reaction when she found out she would meet Olympic gymnastics legend Nadia Comaneci. Not only meet her, but perform for her and have a 90-minute hands-on skills session with her. "Incredible," she said. Comaneci and her husband, Olympic gold medalist Bart Conner, devoted an evening to a group of lucky Special Olympics Great Britain gymnasts on 18 August in London. It was part of a decades-long commitment to Special Olympics that the couple has shared. Both are big fans of Special Olympics and are on the Special Olympics International Board of Directors. They volunteer their experience and knowledge to ensure Special Olympics gymnasts around the world get a chance to perform to the peak of their abilities.

About Chris Hull:I am the communications director for Special Olympics Great Britain.
Share
View less ▲

August 19, 2014 | Africa: Kenya

Friends of Special Olympics Kenya raise over $10,000 for Kenya’s National Games

By Mr John Makathimo

Special Olympics Kenya is using social media and a network of interested professionals to raise funds and build awareness among youth about Special Olympics Kenya's events and programs. They've done well so far and are aiming higher for the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles.View Story Special Olympics Kenya is using social media and a network of interested professionals to raise funds and build awareness among youth about Special Olympics Kenya's events and programs. They've done well so far and are aiming higher for the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles. The Friends of Special Olympics Kenya network successfully carried out its first fundraising campaign at the Impala Club grounds in Nairobi, Kenya during the month of May. Guests of honour from various Kenyan corporations, including the Kenya Sweepstakes, joined forces to raise funds for Special Olympics Kenya's upcoming National Games. Network members, Special Olympics staff, Special Olympics athletes, coaches, families, and Special Olympics Africa Regional Development Manager Mr. Joe Mutua all worked together to make this event possible. Special Olympics Kenya's Board Chair, Mr. James Kimonye, gave the welcome and congratulated the Friends of Special Olympics Kenya group for their initiative and support of Special Olympics. During the proceedings Special Olympics Kenya athletes entertained the crowd with drumming. The event raised approximately 900,000 K, which is equivalent to $10,588 US Dollars, to support the Special Olympics Kenya National Games. Special Olympics Kenya staff members and their supportive network have committed to doubling their efforts to raise funds for the Special Olympics Kenya National Team who qualify to participate at the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games, in Los Angeles, California, USA.

About Mr John Makathimo:Special Olympics Kenya National Director
Share
View less ▲

August 18, 2014 | Africa: Tanzania

Tanzania selects National Team for World Games

By Mr Frank Macha

Special Olympics Tanzania recently held its three-day National Games qualifier for World Games at the Kibaha Secondary School and will now focus on getting their National Team ready for World Games.View Story At World Games, our athletes participate with courage and commitment to excellence in sports. They are supported by an audience filled with their families and peers who watch them strive to achieve their personal best, to reach their highest score and to run their fastest time. Special Olympics Tanzania recently held its three-day National Games qualifier for World Games at the Kibaha Secondary School. 500 Athletes competed in a number of different sports that included athletics, football, volleyball and, handball according to their divisions. Divisioning allows athletes with intellectual disabilities to compete in the best way possible, according to their, age, sex and ability. For more information on divisioning please watch this video by Olympic Gold Medalist and Special Olympics supporter, Bart Conner: http://www.specialolympics.org/Divisioning,_with_Bart_Conner.aspx 100 coaches and 100 volunteers were on hand in Tanzania to assist in the smooth running of the event. Mrs. Halima Kihemba, the Town Director, represented the Coast Region District Commissioner at the event. Mrs. Kihemba urged the program to continue their great work, adding that they were helping with inclusion in the country. She also wished the athletes that qualified for the National Team the best of luck. Special Olympics Tanzania will now focus on getting their National Team ready for World Games. Every day and all around the world, our athletes train and strive to achieve their very best. At World Games, the entire Special Olympics Movement comes together to see our athletes in action and celebrate their victories over huge odds. See you in Los Angeles Team Tanzania!

About Mr Frank Macha :Special Olympics Tanzania National Director
Share
View less ▲

Our Slideshows

See photos of our work around the world.
Learn More ››


Our Videos

Learn about what we do from these great videos.
Learn more ››



Your Donation Matters

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

DONATE TODAY»

Volunteer Near You

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

LEARN MORE»

Follow Us

Help us reach out to one more athlete.

Donate »

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

FIND A LOCATION NEAR YOU »

Our Supporters

The Christmas Records TrustFunding Special Olympics work worldwide.Learn More »


Our Supporters

Annenberg FoundationSupports our goals for coaches’ excellence.Learn More »


Our Supporters

Bank of AmericaProud partner of Special Olympics.Learn More »


Our Supporters

Coca-ColaSpecial Olympics Founding Partner.Learn More »


Our Supporters

ESPNGlobal Presenting Sponsor of Unified Sports®.Learn More »


Our Supporters

EssilorOfficial global supplier of ophthalmic lenses.Learn More »


Our Supporters

AIPSGlobal Impact Partner for Special Olympics.Learn More »


Our Supporters

Lions ClubSupports access to quality eye care.Learn More »


Our Supporters

MattelSupports Special Olympics Youth Programs.Learn More »


Our Supporters

MTM RecognitionSupplier of awards and medals for our athletes.Learn More »


Our Supporters

Perfect Sense DigitalSpecial Olympics' leading digital partner.Learn More »


Our Supporters

Procter & GambleCelebrating over 30 years of partnership with Special Olympics.Learn More »


Our Supporters

SafewayRaises funds and awareness for people with disabilities.Learn More »


Our Supporters

SàfiloSupplies optical frames and sunglasses.Learn More »


Our Supporters

UNICEFProvides greater inclusion of children with disabilities.Learn More »


Our Supporters

Y&RPowering our global youth marketing campaign.Learn more »


Special Olympics Blog

Suneedhi: a Girl, a Clinic, a Dream

For a dental surgeon such as myself, screening was just the first step! i felt we needed to go beyond examinations to ensuring people with intellectual disability got any treatment that they needed. I felt I could help more. read more »

Posted on 2014-09-22 by Lynn

go to blog »


*

Special Olympics - Become a Fan

Limited-Time Match Offer: Donate Monthly and Help Us Reach More Athletes

Monthly giving is easy and convenient. Donate today and transform lives all year long through the joy of sport.

Special Olympics gets an extra $100 for each new monthly donor.