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Special Olympics Canada and GREY Canada Unveil New Campaign


“There is No Special Treatment” Highlights the Equalizing Power of Sport

Special Olympics Canada alongside national partner GREY Canada is proud to unveil a new bilingual campaign that highlights Special Olympics Canada athletes from just ahead of the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles, California, July 25 to August 2. The campaign entitled, “There Is No Special Treatment,” focuses on the equalizing power of sport.

Inspired by the passion determination and drive of Special Olympics athletes, long-time Special Olympics Canada creative partner GREY Canada developed “There Is No Special Treatment.” Spurred by Creative Director James Ansley’s concept, the GREY Canada team established a dynamic, moving campaign that accurately captures the resolve and strength of Special Olympics athletes. GREY Canada, Hubert Davis (Untitled Films), Matt Barnes (WestSide Studios) and Adam Dumoulin (The Egglant), with media planning support from MediaCom, all generously donated their time, expertise and energy into creating “There Is No Special Treatment.”

“Special Olympics Canada is extremely grateful for, and excited about the “There Is No Special Treatment” campaign delivered by dedicated partner GREY Canada. The launch of the campaign is a culmination of countless hours and resources, delivering on a message that resonates deeply with our athletes and their families,” noted Sharon Bollenbach, Chief Executive Officer, Special Olympics Canada. “It is our hope that this campaign will remind all Canadians that individuals with an intellectual disability can and will succeed when given a chance, and ultimately help to inspire more athletes, coaches, volunteers and donors to join the Special Olympics Movement.”

“There Is No Special Treatment” truly shines a light on the limitless potential of Special Olympics athletes through sport. Sport sees no barriers and gives no special treatment, allowing Special Olympics athletes to showcase their abilities. Featured in the campaign are Special Olympics athletes Jackie Barrett (powerlifting), Robert Pipitone (track), Julia Longo (swimming) and Nerissa Pooran (swimming). The TV and radio pieces were narrated by Special Olympics athletes Tess Trojan, Matthew Nighswander and Maxime Duguay.

“Speaking to the athletes I was blown away by the intensity and dedication they bring to their respective sports. I knew we had to share their stories,” says James Ansley, Creative Director with GREY Canada. “Getting to work with the athletes and see them perform up close was an amazing experience.”

“I am honoured and proud to have been one of the narrators for this campaign. ‘There Is No Special Treatment’ shows me that Special Olympics Canada stands behind every one of its athletes and encourages us to do our best,” says Matthew Nighswander. “It also shows Canadians what Special Olympics athletes can achieve when given the chance. Finally, it gave me an opportunity to do the public speaking I love, and be part of something that promotes inclusion and allows me to contribute to my community, my country and society.”

The campaign officially launched on May 18, 2015 and can be seen throughout the summer through paid and generously donated media space from TSN, RDS, The Toronto Sun and The Globe and Mail. The campaign is available across multiple platforms, including film, print, digital, radio and social activations.