Transforming Lives

PCB and athlete Susie Doyle SONA MACC meeting

SOLA President and CEO, Pat Carpenter Bourgeois with Special Olympics athlete Susie Doyens.

Last week a few of us attended the Special Olympics North America Marketing and Communications Meeting in Orlando, Florida. There are lots of exciting things happening in the world of Special Olympics and many new things to share over the next couple of months. One thing that really touched us was the story of Special Olympics Illinois athlete, Susie Doyens. When Susie was younger she barely spoke, her parents remarked how the doctors told them to put Susie in a home. They said no and her mom remembers thinking that Susie, “was going to be the best person with down syndrome there is”. Susie is now an accomplished Special Olympics athlete and a global ambassador whose life was transformed when she joined Special Olympics.

A MUST SEE:
Click here to watch a short PSA about Susie.

Tenacious and Passionate Youth

CEO CornerRecently I had an opportunity to listen to Special Olympics athletes and youth leaders within our organization.  Youth leaders without intellectual disabilities partner with our athletes in a unique program – Project Unify. The youth leaders and athletes were conveying difficulties they were having within their own school systems- getting school leaders to allow them to participate in Special Olympics activities.  One young adult had recruited 130 students within his school interested in participating in Project Unify, but the person who could give them approval within the school said no. The young student was not willing to give up.  He knew the value of this program & wanted his friends to be allowed to participate.  We were able to praise him for not giving up and help him to develop a strategy that won over the leadership at the school.  Thanks to this young man more people will be able to engage in a life changing Movement.  We need more tenacious and passionate youth leaders like this in our organization.

State Summer Games

State Summer Games is right around the corner… 22 days to be exact!  Are you ready?!  We are still looking for great Volunteers for this event.  If you have not signed up yet, click here to fill out the online registration form.  We need hundreds of Volunteers to make this event happen, so don’t wait, sign up today!

The event kicks off Friday May 18th with our Opening Ceremonies at the new Southeastern Track & Field Complex for 7pm.  We invite everyone to to pack the stands and cheer on our athletes!  For more information call 1-800-345-6644.

 

Free to Learn

Free to Learn is a $100,000 dollar Education Giveaway that can be used for any school, any student, at any time during your child’s, or your very own scholastic journey. It’s also a movement that changes lives.  Tickets are $100.

Visit http://www.befreetolearn.com or call 1-800-345-6644 to purchase your ticket today!

 

Family Support

Recently, one of our athletes, Michael, and his brother Daniel (who is also his coach), were featured in the St. Charles Parish Herald.  The article explains how Daniel and Michael became involved with Special Olympics Louisiana and how it has brought them closer together as brothers. 

“He’s always been interested in sports because of his older brother always being involved in sports,” Connie said. “Both of them are inspirations to each other. Mikey idolizes his brother and Daniel is inspired by some of the things Mikey does.”

“When I walked in the door that night I didn’t really want to be there, but by the end of the night I was hooked.”

You can read the full article here!

SOL Bowl Wrap up

Yesterday, the 10th Annual SOL Bowl took place at Colonial Bowling Lanes in Harahan, LA.  Local Celebrities came out to bowl for Special Olympics Louisiana.  Current Saints players, Jed Collins, Matt Tennant and Malcolm Jenkins headlined the event.  Other celebrities included WWLTV’s Doug Mouton, WDSU TV Travers & Fletcher Mackel, Randi Rousseau, and Scott Walker.  FOX 8’s own Jessica Holly was also in attendance. WIST Radio Brian Alle Walsh and Larry Holder bowled a few frames, too.  Former NFL, MLB, and NBA stars were also in attendance including Gary Barbaro.

Twelve companies came out to the event and competed.  Thank you to the following companies for your support of Special Olympics Louisiana:  B & K Construction, Barbaro Family, Cox Communications, Harahan Police Department, Irish Channel St. Patricks Day Club, Kenner Wal-Mart, Laser Amusement, Legette Construction, Otto Candies, LLC, RJK Insurance Services, Skanska MAPP, and Treasure Chest Casino.

The biggest celebrities of the day were our Special Olympics Louisiana Athletes!  Our athletes competed along side the pro-athletes and did a great job!

Check out this WWLTV spot on SOL Bowl!  Be sure to follow us on Twitter, @SOLouisiana, to see what all the buzz was about at SOL Bowl.