Special Olympics Norfolk
Who we are
Special Olympics provides year round sports training and competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.
Special Olympics is a worldwide movement delivering sports to over 5 million athletes in over 170 countries. It is the third member of the Olympic family but it is often said it’s ‘the best kept secret in sport’.
Special Olympics is for all ages. There are programs for the very young to very old and athletes can compete from 8-80 years (or older!).
For our athletes, it is about so much more than the sport. It gives them the opportunity to achieve their full potential, improve their fitness, display courage, experience joy, make friends and have fun.
Special Olympics transforms lives through sport!
We are the Norfolk branch of Special Olympics Great Britain.
Even though we are part of this global movement we receive no funds centrally. As a small team of volunteers, we are responsible for raising all the funds to get new sports off the ground, (which includes hiring venues, providing equipment, finding sports coaches and volunteers etc), keeping them going, and providing competition opportunities.
The Norfolk branch started in late 2012 with just 1 sport with 7 athletes in Norwich. We are proud to say we now deliver 9 sports over 16 sessions to over 200 athletes in Norfolk:-
We currently have nearly 100 regular and committed volunteers that help support and deliver our weekly sports sessions.
We host annual regional sports events in Norfolk and we accompany athletes to compete in National Games every 4 years. In 2013, 4 gymnasts competed in Bath, in 2017, 28 athletes over 5 sports competed in Sheffield and next summer (2021) we will be accompanying over 40 athletes to Liverpool to take part in 6 sports at the Special Olympics GB National Games.
But it’s not just about competition …..
It is estimated that there are over 40,000 people in Norfolk with an intellectual disability.
We are fully committed in ensuring many more of these experience the benefits sporting activities have to offer.
Our future plans are to increase our sports offered to around 12 but more importantly to increase our sports sessions by spreading them to more parts of our wonderful county to make our sessions accessible to all.
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