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March 07, 2014 | SOI General: Headquarters

Our Inspiring Founder, Eunice Kennedy Shriver

By Mary Davis

It may be a coincidence, but I do not believe it was, that Special Olympics was founded by a strong woman who was driven by the values of compassion and intense respect for the dignity of every single human being. Eunice Kennedy Shriver was an inspirational woman, who amongst a family of famous men made a lasting contribution to the world around her. She created opportunity and choice for marginalised people and their families. She multiplied that choice and opportunity through Special Olympics, through the network she created and the people she inspired and promoted. It’s about telling people who were told they can do little, that they can do a lot. On International Women’s Day it is an opportunity to remember our great Founder but to also pay tribute to the 1.7 million female athletes of Special Olympics worldwide; to the thousands of female coaches, officials and staff; to the hundreds of thousands of female volunteers and to the mothers and grandmothers, sisters and aunts of our athletes who day in day out support, love and encourage athletes to be the best that they can be on and off the sports field.

About Mary Davis: Mary Davis, Managing Director of Special Olympics Europe/Eurasia

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