Keifer Ackley is the president of Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity at McNeese State University. Ackley helped organize their “Monster Mash” Halloween dance that had 150 current students at McNeese and over 50 Special Olympics Louisiana-Southwest Area athletes in attendance.
During the dance, it was announced that Ackley had been granted the 2017 American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (Louisiana Chapter) Scholarship Award for his efforts with Special Olympics Louisiana at McNeese. Also, in April, he worked with his fraternity to start an on-campus basketball tournament called “PIKE Slamma Jamma” that was able to raise $4,500 for SOLA.
Ackley says, “We tend to become selfish in college as we become more independent and stressed. Events like these are important for students to learn how to unify, love, and encourage others. It’s truly remarkable to see how many lives are impacted.”
On Saturday, October 28, 2017, one of Special Olympics Louisiana’s interns, Mattie Hawkins, was named the 2017 Southeastern Louisiana University Homecoming Queen.
Mattie is studying to become a senior sports management major. She is the Chapter President of Delta Sigma Theta, a Project PULL mentor, a student worker in the Office of Disability Services, and an intern at Special Olympics Louisiana.
Upon hearing she had won Mattie was speechless, but afterwards said, “It was a major accomplishment to be crowned and I am proud to represent Southeastern Louisiana University and Special Olympics Louisiana.”
THANK YOU TO ALL WHO SUPPORTED PHASE 1 OF THE VOYA FINANCIAL CAMPAIGN.
Phase 2 will be November 13-19. During that time, Voya will be donating $1 for every original post, like, share or comment with the hashtag #InvestInSomethingSpecial, up to $520,000 ($10,000 per participating Program).
Here’s how you can help:
Voya has been collecting stories from the Special Olympics community that answer the question “what are your goals beyond sports”. From Nov 13-19, Voya will start posting these stories to launch the #InvestInSomethingSpecial campaign.
1) Share Voya’s posts about the campaign: Go to Voya’s (@Voya), Special Olympics (@SpecialOlympics) or SONA’s social channels to find the #InvestInSomethingSpecial content and share them with your community, encouraging your audiences to engage by liking, commenting and sharing! Voya’s post will include all the information about the campaign, including that Voya will be donating $1 for every like, share or comment!
2) Like and comment on posts with #InvestInSomethingSpecial: Look up the hashtag and like or comment on the stories people are posting!
3) Post your own story: Voya wants the Special Olympics community to post stories during the campaign. It could be as simple as “Beyond sport, Special Olympics [chapter] is working to inspire our athletes to become leaders of their communities! #InvestInSomething Special” (make sure to include the hashtag!)
Calling all athletes, families, coaches, partners, and volunteers. This is your chance to shine!
One of our favorite things here at SOLA is hearing amazing stories from our Special Olympics community.
Please share your story with us. We want to know how you became involved with Special Olympics and what kind of difference it has made in your everyday life! You could even share your best photos from an event or competition.
We will even share some of your stories to our blog, Facebook, and Twitter!
You can post your stories or pictures into the comments below or email us!
Becca, Kassi, and Kylie McCallister have been volunteering for Special Olympics Louisiana for 15 years. They are a retired military family from Leesville, Louisiana. Kylie is studying to become a special education teacher herself.
It’s important to Becca that she shares this experience with her children because it brings them closer together and allows them to bond with each other. She says, “We should treat others with compassion and acceptance. Serving others holds a special place in our hearts and we are blessed with their unconditional love.”