2022-23 Impact Report

Special Olympics BC’s 2022-23 sport season saw many successes, from growth in the number of athletes with intellectual disabilities back in their year-round programs, to the welcome return of Special Olympics BC Games and Special Olympics World Games.

Back in the Game

Please click here to download the complete 2022-23 Impact Report! Please scroll down for mobile-friendly stories and multimedia.

It’s been said that the COVID-19 pandemic reminded many of us what is genuinely important in our lives. That was deeply true for the Special Olympics BC community, as proven this past year by the joy and passion that greeted the return of more of our year-round programs and our major Special Olympics Games.

When Special Olympics programs were paused due to COVID, thousands of athletes with intellectual disabilities across the province lost the place that makes them feel important, where they belong and they challenge themselves to pursue personal bests. Where they earn the recognition and admiration of their community. Where they have fun while making vital improvements to their health and skills that serve them throughout their lives.

Throughout the 2022-23 season, from podiums to playing fields across the province, we saw how very much it mattered to our athletes to be back in the game.

With all our hearts, we thank all the Special Olympics BC athletes, volunteers, donors, sponsors, and families who made this important season of renewal possible.

There remains a long road ahead to return to our full pre-pandemic capacity. The challenges we face in volunteer recruitment, rising operational costs, and facility access are not going away. But Special Olympics BC’s caring community remains wholly committed to recovering our capacity and delivering top-quality year-round programming for our athletes.

We know we will get there, because we have your support. We know we will get there, because we must. We must continue our drive to enrich the lives of people with intellectual disabilities through the power and joy of sport, and make our communities more inclusive and equitable. Our athletes deserve our best efforts, and they will continue to get them.

In the 2022-23 Impact Report, you’ll see snapshots from the powerful programs and life-changing competitive opportunities that
you made possible with Special Olympics BC. Please take a moment to feel pride in your important contributions.

And then please consider sharing that feeling with someone new to Special Olympics, so they too can get involved and change lives, including their own.

Thank you for your enduring impact through your involvement with Special Olympics BC.

Dan Howe
Special Olympics BC President & CEO

Randy Smallwood
SOBC Board of Directors Chair
Wheaton Precious Metals President & CEO

Donna Bilous
SOBC Leadership Council Chair

Matthew Williams
SOBC Athlete Input Council Chair


Our Season of Renewal

In every corner of our province, Special Olympics BC athletes rejoiced to be back in the game. In 55 communities across the province, Special Olympics BC athletes found belonging, health, and fun in their year-round sport programs. And from Kamloops to Berlin, Special Olympics BC athletes competed with pride in major Games where they put their abilities in the spotlight, and worked with their dedicated coaches to realize their personal bests, goals, and dreams.

SOBC – Surrey athlete Susan Wang spoke to the Vancouver Sun this season about the difference that Special Olympics programs and volunteers have made in her life. She suffered from depression in her pre-teen years, and faced barriers and bullying. “I felt really confused. I didn’t even know if I would graduate high school,” she said.

Then her parents suggested she get involved with Special Olympics BC. Encouraged by her coaches and welcomed by the community, she says, "I not only developed my love of sports, I gained leadership skills." Click here to read more

Today, Susan is a university graduate, a Special Olympics World Games medallist in alpine skiing, and a leader of the Special Olympics movement as a member of the SOBC Athlete Input Council, the Special Olympics Canada Board of Directors, and the Canadian Athlete Leadership Council.

"Volunteers and coaches are the backbone of SOBC. They gave me hope and inspired me to succeed. My goal is to inspire others, just like they inspired me."

Special Olympics BC’s life-changing year-round programs and empowering competitive opportunities would not be possible without the inspiring passion and dedication of our athletes, and the generous support of our vital volunteers, sponsors, donors, and supporters throughout the province.




Your Impact


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Learn More

Check out the full 2022-23 Impact Report to meet valued sponsors and donors, find background on our programs and financials, and more!

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