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Teens and college students are the future leaders of Special Olympics.
It's the mission of Special Olympics to show the world the capabilities of people with intellectual disabilities.
We have more than 5.3 million athletes with intellectual disabilities and unified partners around the world.
Our celebrity supporters are Olympians, professional athletes, social leaders, and movie and music stars.
Eunice Kennedy Shriver was a pioneer in the struggle for the rights of people with intellectual disabilities.
Direction for our movement comes from leaders in government, entertainment, sports and business.
All adults and children with intellectual disabilities can become Special Olympics athletes. Here's how.
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Make a Difference
Needless to say I was extremely alarmed when one of the state agencies I started working with had the account under: Department of M R.!!??
One time, this person was making fun of me at school. They called me a lot of names including the R-word.
One day in school a small group of boys were making fun of her and calling her names. They made her cry and it made me really angry.
My son passed away from a Leukodystrophy (disease of the brains white matter) called Alexander disease. I fight to end the word in his honor.
In middle school two boys would always say the r-word. I tried to make them stop but it would not work. I know that word is not right. People need to realize this word hurts.
My grandson with cri du shay, working in special education & then my daughter-in-law who is a special education teacher, all led the way for me to want to be a part of ending: not just the R word but the unkindness & lack of understanding that exists in our society about people with "special needs."
During an incident at a strange house party police were called. When we met with the police the person who had committed the crime had already left the scene.
Teresa Cruz Lynd
Robert is my younger brother and he was born with Down syndrome. At age 25 he suffered a car accident and was left paralyzed from his waist down. This has been 26 years ago. The world should learn from people like Robert, he doesn't see color, race, age, pretty, skinny, fat he loves all people and is always positive about life and God.
My girlfriend's sister is what every one calls the R word. I hear people say it and it hurts me. When i walk down the road or in town with them all I see is people looking and whispering and it hurts me.
Growing up all I had ever known was being at Special Olympics. Now I am proud to say that I am my aunt's (who is in Special Olympics) unified bowling partner!! My boyfriend of almost 2 years has also volunteered to help!
I have volunteered in the DD community since 14 (1970) and was told back then to not use the word. Parents had already covered that.
Ernest Alonzo, CCRC Brimhall, New Mexico
I run fast and so that I can win this game in Albuquerque Special Olympics competitions this weekend. Our coach is very supportive and also our staff says we can do a good job in Special Olympics games.
My brother has been gone for many years, yet maybe I can still be the protector I tried to be as a child. I have allowed friends, who didn't realize what they were doing, to use that word around me. In honor of my brother, no more!