Washington, D.C. – 15 July 2019: During the month of July, Special Olympics is continuing “The Revolution is Inclusion” five-year global campaign targeting the younger generation of Millennials and Centennials by demonstrating that inclusion is all about togetherness.
From July 15 – July 20, the organization is focusing on celebrating that we are all better together, and making a prominent marketing and communications push to encourage youth, educators, health professionals and employers to make a commitment to promise to include and to sign the Inclusion Pledge. The pledge was created by students from Ponaganset High School, a Special Olympics Unified Champion School in Rhode Island. Over three million young people participate in 6,500 Unified Champion Schools across the country, which are schools that employ a youth engagement and activation strategy that promotes school communities of respect and dignity.
“Today’s youth are leading the way in empowering change and we know when we #choosetoinclude, we are all better together and perceptions change,” said Kelli Seely, Chief Marketing and Development Officer, Special Olympics. “We are making a concerted marketing and communications effort during our Global Week of Inclusion to celebrate all of our abilities, thereby creating something more powerful than we can do alone. We are thankful to our many partners and ambassadors who are joining us this week and throughout the month, using their channels to help us amplify our campaign and helping us end discrimination against people with intellectual disabilities.”
Activations around the week-long campaign include a celebrity PSA commercial, a video series showing inclusion in action, outdoor, print and digital components including a LIVE show with Special Olympics athletes and supporters, and a “Light Up Red” for inclusion activation.
- Celebrities and Special Olympics athletes including Amanda Booth, Laura San Giacomo, Greg Grunberg, JoAnna Garcia Swisher, Max Carver, Kyla Schilz, Joseph Gorin, and many more, participated in a 30-second video PSA, titled, Inclusion Manifesto. Special Olympics created the PSA to show that everyone—from athletes to celebrities—understand the power of us joining together to recognize the abilities of each other, the value that we all bring, and that we are all better together when we #choosetoinclude.
- “Special Olympics Live” – On Friday, July 19th, beginning at 2pm PT/5pm ET two Los Angeles-based Unified Schools teammates—Diego Salazar and Iantha Kahn, along with Max Carver, actor and enthusiastic Special Olympics supporter, and Lindsay Miller, award-winning journalist and news/culture director at POPSUGAR will host a 4-hour program talking about togetherness. The show’s short and varied segments will air across multiple social platforms, as well as partner channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Twitch. ESPN, WWE, Toyota, Aerie, Riot Games and Johnson & Johnson will participate in the show, with Johnson & Johnson making a donation to Special Olympics for each pledge taken during an hour-long segment of the show. People can take the Inclusion Pledge at www.jointherevolution.org
- "Light Up Red” – 225 landmarks from cities all over the globe from Sydney to Abu Dhabi “Lit Up Red” for inclusion in July 2018, and more landmarks and buildings are joining in this global act of unity and turning their buildings red for a night and will “Light Up Red” for inclusion.
Additional Partner Activations:
- Toyota: In Japan, Nagoya Grampus professional soccer team (owned by Toyota) will host 100 Special Olympics Nippon athletes and provide an exclusive clinic to Special Olympics athletes on July 20th.
- Johnson & Johnson: Throughout the month of July, Johnson & Johnson is matching all donations up to $100,000.
- Aerie: Aerie is running a point-of-sale cause marketing campaign in all Aerie stories across the country and Canada from July 8th – July 31st, with all donations benefiting Special Olympics. This campaign is part of a larger partnership with Aerie who recently included Special Olympics athletes in a photo shoot for their activewear line. In addition to using online and across social media, imagery from the photo shoot will appear in stores during the campaign.
The “Revolution is Inclusion” campaign is supported by the following partners: Aerie, Annette M. and Theodore N. Lerner Family Foundation, AnyTimeFitness, AquaTecture, Bank of America, Chicago Bears, Chicago Cubs, Citadel, Citgo, Clif Bar, CME Group, The Coca-Cola Company, Fondazione Varaldo Di Pietro, the Golisano Foundation, Hasbro, Hyatt International, Kantar, Kim Samuel and the Samuel Family Foundation, Knights of Columbus, Ronak Lakhani, The Lane Family, Li Ping, Lions Clubs International, The Lynch Family Foundation, Angelo Moratti, Naked Heart Foundation, Denis O’Brien, P&G, The Raza Family, G. Christopher Smith, Arne & Ruth Sorenson, Stavros Niarchos Foundation, Tommy Hilfiger, TOYOTA, United Airlines, Verizon, The Walt Disney Company and ESPN, WWE, Y&R, Yang Lan and Catherine Zhang.
About Special Olympics
Special Olympics is a global inclusion movement using sport, health, education and leadership programs every day around the world to end discrimination against and empower people with intellectual disabilities. Founded in 1968, and celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year, the Special Olympics movement has grown to more than 6 million athletes and Unified Sports partners in more than 190 countries. With the support of more than 1 million coaches and volunteers, Special Olympics delivers 32 Olympic-type sports and over 100,000 games and competitions throughout the year. Special Olympics is supported by individuals, foundations and partners, including Bank of America, the Christmas Records Trust, The Coca-Cola Company, ESPN, Essilor Vision Foundation, the Golisano Foundation, the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics, Lions Clubs International, Microsoft, Safilo Group, Stavros Niarchos Foundation, TOYOTA, United Airlines, and The Walt Disney Company. Click here for a full list of partners. Engage with us on: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and our blog on Medium. Learn more at www.SpecialOlympics.org.