A former prom queen who competes in floor hockey, Darci Owens deserves her “Miss Amazing Teen” title. Darci, who hails from Eagle River, Alaska, is a Health Messenger who travels the state to meet with alpine ski, snowboard, swimming and basketball teams, as well as police officers involved in the Law Enforcement Torch Run® for Special Olympics. Darci practices what she teaches and encourages her own friends and family to be active.
One tip she shares is: “Go to the gym and make your own workout routine. Bring a water bottle and a healthy snack for a break and then continue.”
But even with how impressive Darci is, she knows that this message of fitness is one others must embrace and teach in order to make the difference that is needed. That is why Darci recently co-led Alaska’s first Special Olympics Health Messenger Training at the statewide annual leadership conference. Darci led areas such as a daily 45-minute fitness session with all attendees and a hands-on hydration activity. Eleven athletes from six different community programs were trained as Health Messengers, which extends the message of health and fitness into many more locations.
When Darci is not traversing the state working with Special Olympics, you might find her at the local animal shelter or elementary school where she volunteers. She also enjoys being with her friends and listening to music.
Raluca Ioana Avram
To Stephanie, the athlete oath isn't just a saying. It's a valuable tool for overcoming her greatest fears. Being involved in Special Olympics has given Stephanie the confidence she needs to celebrate her abilities and pursue her dreams. As a Sargent Shriver International Global Messenger and a Health Messenger, she wants to promote health and educate young athletes.
Lynna Marie Hodgson
Su Xing “Jack” Zheng