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Change lives, including yours, with Special Olympics BC – Powell River

SOBC – Powell River needs athletes and volunteers to join our year-round sport programs for people with intellectual disabilities

Individuals with intellectual disabilities are still far too often left on the sidelines, isolated and hidden away. In Special Olympics BC’s programs, they take centre stage and show all that they can do, empowering themselves and inspiring everyone who sees them in action.

Special Olympics athletes change the way the world sees people with intellectual disabilities, opening hearts and minds to create inclusive communities, and they change how they feel about themselves as they gain vital confidence, skills, and friendships through the power and joy of sport.

Get involved with SOBC – Powell River

Tina McKay for Special Olympics BC

“Before Special Olympics, I didn’t have many friends and had trouble making friends. I often felt left out and excluded because of my differences. Special Olympics made me feel awesome and comfortable in my own skin. The athletes and coaches helped me realize my potential and the value of being on a team. They saw, and helped me to see, the ability I didn’t see in myself,” says SOBC athlete Ashely Adie.

With Special Olympics BC programs and opportunities operating year-round, new athletes with intellectual disabilities are always encouraged to get involved. Special Olympics BC athletes range in age from two to 89, and a wide range of ability levels are all welcome, from highly competitive to purely recreational.

Many Special Olympics BC athletes participate in programs purely for the social and health benefits that are abundant in their weekly practices, while many others develop athletic and performance goals that lead them to focus on excelling in their sport training and competitions.

No matter what motivates athletes to get involved with Special Olympics sports, they will have a great time participating alongside supportive friends and coaches, and their experiences will powerfully impact them both on and off the fields of play.

“I love being in Special Olympics. It is great because it helps me feel included and part of a team,” says SOBC athlete Robert Tarko.

Getting involved with Special Olympics BC as a coach or volunteer can change lives too. Longtime volunteer Sheila Hawton says you won’t ever regret it.

“Volunteering with Special Olympics is rewarding because it gives so much back. The athletes always have a smile for you. If you go in grumpy, you won’t come out grumpy. It’s almost goosebumps that it gives you when you see how well these guys excel,” says Hawton. “There is no downside. It’s so rewarding, it really is. It warms your heart.”

Rewarding Special Olympics BC volunteer roles range from coaching and serving on a community program’s Local Committee to helping with one-time events such as local competitions and fundraisers. All play a crucial part in the Special Olympics movement and family and have the rewarding experience of making a difference in the lives of others and in their communities.

“Working with Special Olympics athletes is an extremely rewarding experience. They teach you as much as we teach them. And the amount of time you put in with Special Olympics, you get back tenfold in the experiences you get to have as a volunteer,” says SOBC coach Alexander Blum-Walker.

With Special Olympics BC – Powell River programs operating year-round, it’s always a great time to get involved. Find out more at

Special Olympics British Columbia

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