The following post was written by Maximiliano and Aldo, two Special Olympics Youth Leaders from Mexico. The pair make it their mission to strengthen inclusion in their community. Check out how they #innovateforinclusion!
As a Special Olympics volunteer I had enjoyed helping some events, but I never imagined that I was going to participate as a Youth Leader or that I would be so closely involved with the athletes. Aldo and I are already friends and we have many things in common.
Making presentations with Aldo, creating videos, and practicing going to schools to invite other young people to join us has been a lot of fun. When I arrived at the schools to give the talks at the beginning I was nervous but since Aldo has gone to many companies to give athlete testimonies he helped me not to be ashamed. I like to see how the young people of my country like me are interested in being part of Special Olympics and Unified Sports - it is a great way for everyone to be equal and we can be in coexistence.
I like Max and I like working with him and inviting more people and teachers to know that we are all equal and that there should be no discrimination. I also invited Max to go for a bike ride because I do cycling and I wanted to teach him.
I like to speak in public sometimes, especially in the schools that we have visited and with other fellow athletes when we talk about the Revolution of Inclusion. When we do this I feel very comfortable and I am pleased that the young people are interested in helping us.
The 2018–2019 Special Olympics Youth Innovation Grant initiative is supported through partnerships with Hasbro, Inc.,The Samuel Family Foundation, the Office of Special Education Programs at the United States Department of Education, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, the Kantar Group, the Microsoft Corporation, Lane Global Youth Leadership, and the Lions Clubs International Foundation. Learn more about these inspiring projects at SpecialOlympicsGlobalYouthProjects.org.