Stories

Sharing the joy of sport

Special Olympics has received many incredible stories from people whose lives have been changed and enriched through sport, friendship, fun and mentorship. Some of those people have been kind enough to share their stories with you.

Visit our photo and video galleries featuring our athletes, coaches, and volunteers.

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After 30 years as a certified dental assistant, British Columbia’s Misty Pagliaro took “the big leap” and changed her career entirely, so she could have a greater impact on those with an intellectual disability.
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Special Olympics Ontario – Kingston coach and motionballer Chris Szymus started volunteering for the movement while he was attending Queen’s University – but wishes he got involved sooner. Growing up in Mississauga, Chris witnessed firsthand the impact Special Olympics had on his older brother Greg, who has autism spectrum disorder. He participates in Special Olympics five-pin bowling, softball and basketball.
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Nova Scotia’s MacNeil sisters have had the ideal Friday night since they were teenagers: coaching Special Olympics FUNdamentals. Morgan, 23 and Abbie, 25, have volunteered with the Enfield program for children and youth with an intellectual disability for the past seven years. In 2018, they officially took over as Program Leaders.
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When Special Olympics Alberta – Calgary coach Tracy Le wants to get someone involved in the movement, she invites them to motionball Marathon of Sport.
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Reagan has been a volunteer with Special Olympics Manitoba since 2013 and is the Head Coach of Interlake Athletics. Aside from her coaching role, her commitment to building up and increasing awareness of Special Olympics in the Manitoba Interlake Region is what sets her apart.
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Please join us for National Coaches Week as we say thank you by sharing stories from some of these amazing coaches. To kick it off: A heartfelt message from Special Olympics athletes! #ThanksCoach
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Kent started volunteering for Special Olympics Swift Current in 2015 as an assistant coach for floor hockey. He then became co-head coach for both floor hockey and softball. He’s also been a member of his Special Olympics Community Board since 2016.
Special Olympics athlete Tess Trojan swings a golf club
National Sport Organization Golf Canada along with the Professional Golfers’ Association of Canada are true Champions of Inclusion, creating countless opportunities for Special Olympics athletes and coaches across the country.
A group of people pose for a photo at a work party.
When Special Olympics Newfoundland & Labrador athlete Leah McDonald saw the call for Champions of Inclusion nominations, she immediately thought of her boss at Spirit of Newfoundland Productions.
Kyla and a Special Olympics athlete hug at an event
Manitoba’s Kyla Anderson, a special education teacher and motionball Winnipeg committee member, is a true role model when it comes to creating inclusive communities.