Schools Rally for Sports

Patrick and Zack were named Innovators of the Week! Click here to learn more about their story and the impact they are making in their community.


Patrick and Zack are Special Olympics Youth Leaders from Illinois, USA who are hosting a Unified Sports Day at their high school and inviting other nearby schools to participate. Through this project, Patrick and Zack hope to engage new youth leaders and expand Special Olympics activities to other high schools within their area. In September 2018, Patrick and Zack participated in the Special Olympics Global Youth Leadership Forum in Baku, Azerbaijan and learned how to enhance the impact of their youth leadership and establish a project plan for their Unified Sports Day.


Through the Unified Sports Day event, Patrick and Zack will invite five nearby schools from their area to participate in a day of inclusive sports. There will be many different sport activities, with opportunities for people of all abilities to engage in an event and showcase their athletic skills. Alongside sporting activities, the event will also have opportunities for youth leadership training and development. The goal of leadership training is to develop new youth leaders to lead a new Unified Sports activity or Special Olympics club at their own school. Patrick and Zack also hope that this event will encourage schools to offer new Unified Sports activities and engage in local competitions. Currently, there are limited opportunities for their high school to engage in Unified Sports competitions. By inviting five local schools, youth leaders, and sports competitors, Patrick and Zack believe they will be able to increase interscholastic Unified Sports competitions amongst the nearby schools and provide more opportunities for Special Olympics engagement in their area in Illinois.


For Patrick and Zack, being members of the Unified Generation means playing alongside friends and developing friendships through sports. As the youth leaders for the Unified Sports Day, Patrick and Zack believe they will make a positive impact on their community and expand the inclusion revolution.






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