COVID-19

Ben McBride is a volunteer football (soccer) coach from Special Olympics UAE. Prior to joining Special Olympics UAE as a Coach, Ben organized various sports programs for athletes of determination* for over 15 years.
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It has been a year of profound challenges driven by restrictions, loss and uncertainty. The athletes of Special Olympics—many of whom were already severely marginalised by society—saw their daily lives made even more difficult with drastically reduced access to activities and education due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
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Special Olympics Maryland has been looking for ways to engage athletes virtually since the COVID-19 pandemic began. In March, they started monthly “Sports Talks” highlighting a different sport each time as part of their virtual movement.
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Big Show is one of the most decorated WWE champions in history, an actor and a Special Olympics Global Ambassador. He has earned the respect of athletes around the world by attending any event he can, encouraging other WWE stars to participate in the movement and crafting ideas to keep athletes healthy and engaged during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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It is during these times of the unknown that the need for innovation and creativity emerges. In the following videos, Special Olympics Youth Leaders share how they took on the challenge of a new, virtual normal, and committed to creating innovative projects portraying an uncertain time.
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I’ve been a Special Olympics North Dakota coach for 32 years. In that time, I’ve had the opportunity to coach athletes in snowshoe, cross-country skiing, bowling, basketball, volleyball, powerlifting, swimming, soccer (football) and athletics.
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Njegoš Mihajlović, athlete leader and Special Olympics medallist has become the first person with intellectual disabilities to enrol in a University in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
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In 2004, 14-year old Ashley Adie experienced true inclusion for the first time. During a Special Olympics British Columbia Regional swim meet, Adie would enjoy the competition, but she found something much more than the ribbons and personal bests that day.
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Once the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Abby Resnick could no longer participate in competitions, coach floor hockey, and teach drum and tone for people with special needs. She started to look for new activities to do at home.
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As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to leave a majority of sports and events on hold, Special Olympics launched Call To Action, an initiative to encourage our athletes to remain active and lift their spirits by surprising them with a phone call from their heroes.