Special Olympics PEI athletes are thriving in roles on and off the playing fields. In 2020, Special Olympics PEI launched an Athlete Leadership Academy! The Academy is an opportunity for Island athletes, beyond sports training and competition, to gain knowledge and experience in a number of modules/courses. As athletes explore and complete these workshops they will build community and feel more empowered to reach their full potential.
Health Messenger, one of the four workshops available to Athlete Leaders, empowers Special Olympics Athletes to develop healthy lifestyles, influence other athletes to lead healthier lives, advocate within their communities for inclusion around health and wellness services, education and resources, and advocate for the health needs of people with ID. Health Messengers choose a focus area and serve as health and wellness leaders, educators, advocates, and role models that align with the mission and vision of Special Olympics PEI's Healthy Communities program.
Introducing our Health Messengers:
Heidi is supported by her mentor, Velma Bince. Here are 5 fun facts about Heidi:
1️⃣ Heidi has been an athlete for 14 years;
2️⃣ Heidi participates in Golf, Snowshoe, Bocce and 5 Pin-Bowling;
3️⃣ Heidi is an Athlete Leader for the Canadian Athlete Leadership Council;
4️⃣ Heidi wanted to be a Health Messenger to help other athletes be healthier and active in their daily lives;
5️⃣ Heidi encourages others to exercise daily and get out in the community!
Janet is supported by her mentor, Jackie Charchuk. Here are 5 fun facts about Janet:
1️⃣ Janet has been an athlete for 24 years!
2️⃣ Janet participates in Golf, Bocce, 5-Pin Bowling and Snowshoe;
3️⃣ Janet co-hosts our Annual Awards;
4️⃣ Janet wanted to be a Health Messenger to make a difference in the lives of her fellow athletes;
5️⃣ Janet loves yoga!
Lisa is supported by mentor, Judy Gallant. Here are 5 fun facts about Lisa:
1️⃣ Lisa has been an athlete for 10 years;
2️⃣ Lisa participates in Bocce, 5-Pin Bowling, Synergy Fitness Performance Program, Soccer, Floor Hockey and Softball;
3️⃣ Lisa lists her biggest accomplishment in sport to date as winning Gold with Team PEI Floor Hockey at the 2020 SOC Winter Games in Thunder Bay;
4️⃣ Lisa wanted to be a Health Messenger to helps her fellow athletes. Lisa has lots of hydration tips, which she feels could teach other people to like water and drink enough of their daily intake;
5️⃣ Lisa participated in a UPEI research project, which, thanks to an app called AVIAL, allows her to create tasks she wants to do during the day, including some of the Health Messenger topics!
Ellen is supported by mentor, Kathleen MacNearney. Here are 5 fun facts about Ellen:
1️⃣ Ellen has been an athlete for 13 years;
2️⃣ Ellen participates in Cross Country Skiing, 5-Pin Bowling, Swimming, Curling, Performance Programs, and Basketball;
3️⃣ Ellen has been Special Olympics Canada's Female Athlete of the Year TWICE!
4️⃣ Ellen wanted to be a Health Messenger to learn skills to help her throughout her life;
5️⃣ Ellen has a fantastic fruit smoothie recipe!
Cameron is supported by mentor, Catherine McInnis. Here are 5 fun facts about Cameron:
1️⃣ Cameron has been an athlete for 6 years;
2️⃣ Cameron participates in Athletics, Powerlifting, Snowshoeing and Swimming;
3️⃣ Cameron's biggest accomplishment in sport was when he won his first trophy in Powerlifting;
4️⃣ Cameron wanted to be a Health Messenger to hone his leadership skills;
5️⃣ Cameron is very active on social media, sharing videos promoting ideas and activities for healthy living!