• Cycling in Cairo

    Our Mission

    Special Olympics transforms lives through the joy of sport, every day, everywhere. We are the world’s largest sports organization for people with intellectual disabilities: with more than 4.7 million athletes in 169 countries -- and over a million volunteers.

    Cyclists from Syria and Iran compete at Middle East-North Africa regional games in Cairo, Egypt.

  • Cycling in Cairo

    Our Mission

    Special Olympics transforms lives through the joy of sport, every day, everywhere. We are the world’s largest sports organization for people with intellectual disabilities: with more than 4.7 million athletes in 169 countries -- and over a million volunteers.

    Special Olympics athlete Travis Jackson is interviewed by ESPN after playing in a unified basketball game with NBA and WNBA stars.

  • Cycling in Cairo

    Our Mission

    Special Olympics transforms lives through the joy of sport, every day, everywhere. We are the world’s largest sports organization for people with intellectual disabilities: with more than 4.7 million athletes in 169 countries -- and over a million volunteers.

    Special Olympics has performed over 1.6 million free health examinations for our athletes, opening a door to health care many with intellectual disabilities find hard or impossible to access.

  • Cycling in Cairo

    Our Mission

    Special Olympics transforms lives through the joy of sport, every day, everywhere. We are the world’s largest sports organization for people with intellectual disabilities: with more than 4.7 million athletes in 169 countries -- and over a million volunteers.

    Volunteers from Mattel are among the many people involved with our Young Athletes program, which gives kids 2 to 7 years old an introduction to sports and play.

Bibliography

The Research Bibliography lists citations for all research papers commissioned by Special Olympics and other papers related to intellectual disability.

Research Policy Papers

Special Olympics research policy papers distill the organization's scientific findings into shorter overviews of topics of particular interest to the movement. Designed for readers without scientific backgrounds, these papers often draw from multiple sources to explore a issue, rather than just summarize one research study.

The Scope of Special Olympics

Special Olympics has a much broader reach than most people realize, with events around the globe and initiatives that branch out beyond sports into areas such as public health and education.

Impact of Special Olympics Programming

Special Olympics has established through large-scale objective studies that it is having a large and positive impact on the lives of people with intellectual disabilities, their families, and communities and society at large. Special Olympics has never been more relevant to families and society because it promotes attitude changes and encourages enlightenment as the standard in society instead of the exception.