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Special Olympics is a global organization that serves athletes with intellectual disabilities working with hundreds of thousands of volunteers and coaches each year. Since the establishment of Special Olympics in 1968, the number of people with and without intellectual disabilities who are involved with the organization has been growing, but the unmet need to reach more people with intellectual disabilities is staggering.

The Power of Sport. For every Special Olympics athlete, there are many more waiting for their chance.  Help us reach one more person who wants to participate.  Download Program Fact Sheet

It’s at the local level--right here--where interested volunteers meet the athletes. That’s where the perceptions start to change and where the miracle of transformation takes place. Special Olympics provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Those activities give them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship.

Sports Offered

  • Aquatics 
  • Athletics 
  • Basketball
  • Bocce 
  • Bowling 
  • Floor Hockey 
  • Golf
  • Gymnastics
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Tennis
  • Volleyball 

News and Stories


June 05, 2018 | North America: Southern California

Special olympics games

By Alex Delp

For 3 years I’ve been attending this event and has been more popular in Orange California. Special Olympics was the first to offer games. Throughout the year Special Olympics program they do the pledge as well as the athletic oath.View Story For 3 years I’ve been attending this event and has been more popular in Orange California. Special Olympics was the first to offer games. Throughout the year Special Olympics program they do the pledge as well as the athletic oath. At every competition Special Olympics provides gold silver and bronze medals for our top 3 winners. 4th through 8th place offers ribbons in a variety of colors. When you get the same medals in a row it’s called a winning streak. All gold is a gold metalist, all silver is a silver medalist and all bronze is a bronze medalist. Over 1,100 athletes will be competing in the Summer Games. The Summer Games is on June 9 till June 10 at Cal State, Long Beach. The medals and ribbons you get are yours to keep. Additionally awards are part of MTM recognition.

About Alex Delp:For special olympics their awards and medal designs will vary. At the diamond resorts international people compete for medals as well. I couldn’t have done this without all your support for the last 3 years. I look forward to seeing special olympics next year located at Fred Kelly stadium adjacent to Elmodena high school
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March 26, 2018 | North America: Southern California

End the R-Word

By VS

I am a mother of a smart, handsome, sweet, and funny 8 year old boy with Autism. It is cringing to hear this word being used casually, but when the word is being used to disrespect someone you love, it hurts. I will never forget the young woman who called my son an abomination and the r-word. ThatView Story I am a mother of a smart, handsome, sweet, and funny 8 year old boy with Autism. It is cringing to hear this word being used casually, but when the word is being used to disrespect someone you love, it hurts. I will never forget the young woman who called my son an abomination and the r-word. That is why I feel so passionate about this. No one deserves to be called the "r-word"!

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March 12, 2018 | North America: Southern California

R word does NOT exist in my Vocabulary

By Kellyn

I Pledge not to use the R word. Everyone is born as the same kind of human species. The R word does NOT exist in my Vocabulary.View Story I Pledge not to use the R word. Everyone is born as the same kind of human species. The R word does NOT exist in my Vocabulary.

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2014 USA Games

The 2014 Special Olympics USA Games ran June 14-21. See results and stories.

Jun 25 - Jul 4 2011 2011 Summer Games Athens, Greece

Areas Served

Antelope Valley, Barstow, Desert, East San Gabriel Valley, Fairview Developmental Center, Greater San Bernardino, Greater Los Angeles, Imperial Valley, Kern/Inyo Counties, Lanterman Developmental Center, Long Beach, Los Angeles Region, Mojave, Morongo Basin, Northern Santa Barbara, Orange County, Pasadena, Pomona Valley, Riverside Area, Riverside/San Bernardino Regions, San Diego, San Gabriel Valley Region, San Luis Obispo County, Santa Barbara County, Santa Clarita Valley, South Bay, Southeast Los Angeles, Temecula Valley, Tri-Valley, Ventura County, Western San Bernardino, and Westside. More...