What is a Local Club/Program?
It is a community-based local branch of the National or State Special Olympics Program. Local Club/Program offers a wide range of sports and non-sport activities that are designed to promote inclusion, a sense of community, and celebrate the unique abilities of all members. Local Club/Program welcomes individuals with intellectual disabilities, their families, as well as volunteers from diverse backgrounds to join. Local Club/Program operates at the grassroots level of the Special Olympics movement. Check out this guide for specific steps for starting and growing a local Club/Program.
Who can start a Local Club/Program?
Anyone! If you are a volunteer, an athlete, a Unified Partner, or a family member of someone with an intellectual disability, learn more about starting a Local Club/Program to expand Special Olympics opportunities more athletes in your community.
What is the purpose of a Local Club/Program?
- Sports - To offer ongoing training and competition opportunities for people with and without ID, according to Special Olympics rules and guidelines.
- Inclusion - to bring people together in a welcoming and inclusive environment that gives people with and without ID a sense of community.
- Health & Fitness - to promote a healthy lifestyle, fitness, nutrition and wellbeing of everyone in the community.
- Leadership - to develop leaders with and without ID who will expand the Local Club, strengthen their leadership skills, and set a strong leadership example for everyone.
- Fun and Recreation - to create a fun, open environment where people can enjoy sports and social activities.
How can I start a Local Club/Program?
It is as simple as 1-2-3! It’s not really. That’s why we’ve provided a detailed walk through of different elements required to start and strengthen a local Special Olympics entity. Check it out in this guide. If you have any question, get in touch with the Special Olympics Office nearest to you for guidance and support.