Global Messengers

Through sports training and competitions, Special Olympics helps people with intellectual disabilities find joy, acceptance and success. As their lives open up, athletes gain the confidence that comes with achievement. They feel empowered.

They are ready to take on new leadership challenges to make use of their new abilities. Pairing their experience as an athlete with additional training they can serve as spokespeople raising awareness in their communities and educating others about Special Olympics. They speak to audiences and journalists about the positive changes that Special Olympics helped bring about in their lives. At Special Olympics, our athletes are empowered to share their many gifts and talents with society.
Sargent Shriver International Global Messengers, 2018-2022
Special Olympics Philippines
Special Olympics Illinois
Special Olympics Brazil
Special Olympics Colorado
Special Olympics Pakistan
Special Olympics Great Britain
Special Olympics Hong Kong
Special Olympics Kuwait
Special Olympics Zimbabwe
Special Olympics Hawaii


For twenty years Special Olympics athlete leaders have served in a select role titled Sargent Shriver International Global Messenger. These spokespeople for the movement lead the campaign for a more inclusive world for people with intellectual disabilities. Through their participation and leadership at global, regional, and local events—both internal and external to the Special Olympics Movement—they challenge the mindsets of political leaders, policy makers, educators, employers, and society. Read more about their recent role at the 2019 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Abu Dhabi here.
NEW 2019-2023 Sargent Shriver International Global Messengers Announced!