Unified Football for Women and Girls in the Netherlands
Kelly and Lex are Special Olympics Youth Leaders from Netherlands leading a Youth Innovation Project to increase Unified Sports opportunities for women and girls in the Netherlands. In their country, Unified football (soccer) has only men’s teams; and though women can join men’s Unified football teams, there are no teams and competitions especially for women. Through their project, Kelly and Lex will kick-start a new competitive Unified football team for women with and without disabilities in the Netherlands.
As Kelly and Lex start their project, they will begin recruit young women with and without intellectual disabilities to participate on their team. After they have assembled their team, Kelly and Lex will initiate practices and trainings so the team can develop their skills together. In the first year of their team, Kelly and Lex plan to lead a Unified football competition against an all-male team but as their team continues to attract new participants and grows, they aim to lead a Unified football tournament with all-female teams in the future.
By creating opportunities for women of all abilities through football, Kelly and Lex are leading a movement to ignite inclusion in Netherlands and around the world. With Kelly and Lex’s leadership, the Unified Generation continues to grow!