Special Olympics is a global organisation that offers children and adults with an intellectual disability year-round sports training and competition in Olympic-type summer and winter sports. It was established by Mrs Eunice Kennedy Shriver in the USA in 1968.
It is recognised by the IOC as the international representative organisation for athletes with intellectual disabilities. Special Olympics internationally has 2.4 million registered athletes.
In Australia 4500 athletes are supported by over 1000 volunteers in 46 regions throughout the country. It is the only organisation where athletes with an intellectual disability can play their sport on a national and international basis, no matter what their ability or level of impairment.
Through Special Olympics people with an intellectual disability can improve their physical fitness and motor skills, develop greater self-confidence and engage in their community.
The philosophy of Special Olympics is summed up in the Athletes' Oath: Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me brave in the attempt."
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