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50th anniversary special edition

Pictured: Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver at the first Special Olympics Games in 1968

Celebrating 50 years of inclusion and inspiration

Fifty years ago, the world began to change for the better for millions of people with intellectual disabilities – and for all those who love them.

In July 1968, the forerunner of Special Olympics, a daylong city-wide track meet held in Chicago’s Soldier Field for people with intellectual disabilities, put a bright – and very public – spotlight on ability, not disability.

The event is described as “daybreak” – the early stirring of a global movement for people with intellectual disabilities. No longer trapped in the shadows, the Chicago games made it possible for the athletes to compete and have fun – not to be stigmatized.

On Saturday, July 21 we will celebrate the Global Day of Inclusion, which marks 50 years since that momentous event at Soldier Field that changed the lives of so many.

Find out more about this historic moment on our website, and read on to learn about the celebrations taking place to mark 50 years of inclusion, inspiration, and change with Special Olympics.

Special Olympics doughnut available at Tim Hortons on July 21

Tim Hortons 50th anniversary donought

A proud partner of Special Olympics CanadaTim Hortons has joined in on the Special Olympics 50th anniversary celebrations by announcing a limited-edition Special Olympics doughnut!

The doughnut was designed by Special Olympics Alberta athlete Savannah Lussier and will be available at stores nationwide on July 21, the Global Day of Inclusion.

All proceeds from the doughnut will go towards life-changing Special Olympics programs throughout the country. Make sure to stop by your local Tim Hortons on Saturday to pick up your doughnut and support athletes with intellectual disabilities across Canada!

>> Read more

Special Olympics set to mark 50-year anniversary with Global Day of Inclusion

Victoria Street Bridge, Trail B.C.

Communities across the province will be lighting the night sky red on Saturday, July 21 as they join millions around the globe for the start of a year-long celebration to mark the 50th anniversary of Special Olympics.

Officially proclaimed the Global Day of Inclusion by the Province of B.C., Special Olympics BC kicks off the celebration of the 50th anniversary as communities across the province join in by illuminating the night sky red in honour of Special Olympics athletes worldwide.

The Parliament Buildings in Victoria will join a number of structures being illuminated around B.C., including Rogers Arena, BC Place, Squamish Adventure Centre, Quesnel’s Fraser River Footbridge, and many more. You can find a full list of buildings participating in the light up for inclusion at left. In addition, 22 communities across B.C. (listed at left) have joined the provincial government in proclaiming July 21 the Global Day of Inclusion.

Pictured above right: BC Place is one of the buildings that will light up red for the Global Day of Inclusion on July 21, 2018.

>> Read more

July 2018 news

Team BC set to show skills at 2018 Special Olympics Canada Summer Games

Special Olympics Team BC 2018

Two hundred and forty-four members of Special Olympics Team BC 2018 are set to represent their province with pride at the 2018 Special Olympics Canada Summer Games in Antigonish, Nova Scotia. Running from July 31 to August 4, this event will see Special Olympics athletes from across Canada compete in athletics, basketball, bocce, golf, powerlifting, rhythmic gymnastics, soccer, softball, and swimming.

“Team BC athletes have been working very hard and we are excited to see them shine at the 2018 Special Olympics Canada Summer Games,” says Leslie Thornley, Team BC 2018 Chef de Mission. “They have been training with their local programs, working with sport-specific experts, and focusing on nutrition so they can be at their best for National Games. We know they will do B.C. proud with their abilities and sportsmanship.”

>> Read more

Goldcorp Invitational makes a difference for SOBC athletes

Held on June 28, this year’s Goldcorp Invitational Golf Tournament was a wonderful and inspiring day of golf that truly makes a difference to Special Olympics athletes across British Columbia.

Now in its 12th year, the Goldcorp Invitational Golf Tournament has raised more than $3 million for Special Olympics BC. Goldcorp President & CEO David Garofalo (pictured at right with SOBC – Abbotsford athlete James Clifford) reminded participants of the impact that SOBC has on the lives of individuals with intellectual disabilities. “It’s not just about the athletics,” he told the crowd. “It teaches them life skills that improve their quality of life generally. It’s about their nutrition, their lifestyle, it’s preparing them for life, not just the sports.”

Watch athlete reporter James Clifford’s coverage of the 2018 Goldcorp Invitational Golf Tournament

We are very grateful to Goldcorp and all the sponsors, volunteers, teams, and supporters who participate in this event to help change lives with SOBC.

SOBC athletes primed for 2018 BC Summer Games

SOBC track and field

Twenty-five Special Olympics BC athletes and nine coaches are set to take part in athletics and swimming at the Cowichan 2018 BC Summer Games being held July 19 to 22 in the Cowichan Valley.

The BC Games provide a competitive multi-sport environment that supports the development of athletes, coaches, and officials as they move on to higher levels of competition. More than 3,733 participants, including 2,808 athletes, 543 coaches, and 382 officials will be in the Cowichan Valley for the 31st edition of the Summer Games. The BC Games are celebrating their 40th anniversary.

We’re excited to cheer on the SOBC athletes as they hit the track and the pool competing in Special Olympics events! Good luck to all the athletes and coaches taking part!

>> Read more

Sports Celebrities Festival set to inspire on October 4

Sports Celebrities Festival

The Sports Celebrities Festival presented by Wheaton Precious Metals is an inspiring and interactive gala celebrating the power of sport and the human spirit. Now in its 20th year, this popular event has raised more than $5.4 million in support of Special Olympics BC and the Canucks for Kids Fund.

This year, the glitzy gala will be held on October 4 at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. This exciting event offers opportunities to meet and mingle with SOBC athletes and local sports heroes, including the entire Vancouver Canucks roster.

Pictured above right: 2017 Sports Celebrities Festival co-emcees James Cybulski and SOBC – Langley athlete Christian Burton. Photo courtesy of Jeff Vinnick and the Vancouver Canucks.

Ways to get involved:

Please click here to view all sponsorship opportunities

If you would like to donate an item to the auction, please contact Charlotte Taylor by email or by phone at 604-737-3056.

Tables for the event start at $3,000. If you’re interested in purchasing a table to attend the event, please contact Christina Hadley by email or by phone at 604-737-3073.

SOBC and Blakes swing into summer with the Vancouver Canadians

Vancouver Canadians

Special Olympics BC is proud to partner with Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP (Blakes) for two Vancouver Canadians baseball games this summer.

SOBC will be part of the Vancouver Canadians game at Scotiabank Field on August 14 as part of the Superstar Series promotion. The first game was held on July 19.

Bill Maclagan, Vancouver Office Managing Partner at Blakes, said they are very pleased to partner with Special Olympics and the Vancouver Canadians for its Superstar Series this year.

“For 50 years in Canada, Special Olympics has celebrated inclusion, diversity, excellence, competition, and courage,” Maclagan said. “This is what Blakes is all about and why we chose to partner with Special Olympics BC this year.”

As part of the partnership with Blakes, the first 1,000 fans through the door will receive a commemorative card featuring New Westminster baseball product Justin Morneau, who will be in attendance at the game. In addition, there will be giveaways and contest prizes courtesy of SOBC, plus an SOBC athlete will be throwing out the ceremonial first pitch.

Tickets to the August 14 Vancouver Canadians game can be purchased by calling 604-872-5232, online at www.canadiansbaseball.com, or by visiting the Nat Bailey Stadium Box Office at 4601 Ontario Street, Vancouver, B.C.

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Fit Families & Friends a great way to stay active this summer

Fit Families & Friends

Make Special Olympics BC Fit Families & Friends part of your summer!

With the support of a Special Olympics Healthy Communities grant, the Golisano Foundation, and our ongoing Provincial Partners, SOBC is continuing to expand on our health programming.

This is a great opportunity for SOBC athletes to get out with their families, friends, and social supports to meet as a group and get exercise and nutrition tips, creating a fun environment to encourage each other and meet health goals together.

>> Participating communities and times

Marathon of Sport coming to Victoria in August

motionball Marathon of Sport

The exciting and inspiring motionball Marathon of Sport is coming to Victoria on August 11!

Taking place at the beautiful University of Victoria campus, this day-long sporting event will bring local Special Olympics athletes together with young professionals for a memorable day of inclusion, fun, and fundraising to support Special Olympics programs throughout the country.

For more information and to get involved contact Meg Ishida, Fundraising Coordinator at 604-314-4535 / 1-888-854- 2276 toll-free or email mishida@specialolympics.bc.ca.

>> Read more and support participants

SOBC staff update

SOBC logo

Special Olympics BC is pleased to announce Jean Tetarenko will be joining the provincial staff in the role of Competition and Youth Coordinator starting on September 4.

Jean is currently the Regional Coordinator for Region 6 and will work from Victoria. In addition, Jean will continue serving in the role of Chef de Mission for the Region 6 team for the 2019 Special Olympics BC Winter Games in Greater Vernon, slated for February 21 to 24. Special Olympics BC is excited to be able to bring someone with Jean’s experience and passion into the SOBC Provincial Office.

Jean is taking over the position from Joanie Hayes. Joanie has moved on to pursue other interests and will continue to serve as a Special Olympics BC coach. Everyone at SOBC wishes Joanie well in her future endeavours and would like to thank her for her time working at the Provincial Office.

3701 Hastings St., Unit 210
Burnaby, B.C. V5C 2H6
Toll-free: 1-888-854-2276

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