The success of Special Olympics is not only be measured by thenumber of Special Olympics athletes that participate but in the quality of the experience they receive. We continually collect data and evaluate our program to help us make improvements each year.
Special Olympics is the world’s leading voice in elevating awareness of the needs and abilities of people with intellectual disabilities. Sports are at the heart, but our ultimate goal is to use stories of athletes’ achievements, skills and challenges to educate, engage and ultimately change attitudes toward people with intellectual disabilities.
In 2011, Philanthropedia ranked Special Olympics the top non-profitorganization serving people with disabilities. Philanthropedia is a subsidiary of GuideStar, which encourages charitable giving by promoting financial responsibility and transparency amongnon-profit organizations.
Special Olympics Oklahoma was recognized by the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits as one of the top non-profit organizations in the state. We received a “ONE Awards” in the sports organization category in 2009.
Freddie Brumlow is a Special Olympics athlete from Minco, OK who has competed in Special Olympics for years. Freddie went through the Healthy Athletes Opening Eyes screening the first year it was offered in Oklahoma. He was unaware that he needed glasses and had never been tested. After he went through screening process, Freddie was given a free pair of glasses. Afterwards, he was sitting on a bench outside just looking up at the trees. Someone asked him what he was doing and he said "I've always enjoyed listening to the birds outside but he never was able to see them until ow."
To reach more Special Olympics athletes in our state, we have developed a initiative called Young Athletes Program. Traditional Special Olympics events are for those 8 years and above with intellectual disabilities. TheYoung Athlete Program gives future Special Olympics athletes ages 3 – 7 the opportunity to experience the atmosphere of Special Olympics events.At Summer Games, Winter Games and Area events, these youngsters go through about a dozen stations, receiving training in different athletic events. At the end of the day, these "Stars of the Future" take to the main stage to show off what they’ve learned. Young Athletes Program is such a great tool to introduce Special Olympics not only to these young kids but also to their parents who may not be familiar with how truly a life-changing program Special Olympics is.
One parent said, “I have changed my expectations about mychild.” The Young Athlete program is also appropriate for preschools, schools and playgroups to use with small groups of young children with and without intellectual disabilities. The flexibility of Young Athletes ensures the opportunity to welcome families and their young children into the Special Olympics Oklahoma family.
Throughout the Special Olympics movement, we believe that youth with and without intellectual disability be given the opportunity to lead in order to change core attitudes about inclusion, acceptance, respect andsocial justice for all people with intellectual disability. Unified Sports, Project UNIFY, SO Get into it and Partners Clubs are initiatives that have been developed to engage today’s youth to help to build respect and understanding for all people with disabilities. All of these initiatives empower today’s youth to take leadership rolls and strive to make this world more inclusive and accepting.
Unified Sports is fun for all ages, but is particularly powerful as an educational tool in schools. Special education teachers have reported the program to be extremely effective at integrating youth, promoting physical activity and inspiring leadership. One teacher reported, “I’ve seen more interaction on the field today between classmates than I’ve seen in my classroom all year.”
Trista Kutcher, a teacher and parent of a Special Olympics athlete said, "Thank you so very much from a teacher's heart. I absolutely love what I do and being able to guide my students to the level of acceptance and tolerance that your curriculum provides is incredible. Oh, what tools you have provided! Oh, the impact they will have!"
The Board of Directors is responsible for overseeing the effective management, direction and mission of Special Olympics Oklahoma. The essential functions of the Board are policy making, the assurance of sound management, increasing public awareness of intellectual disabilities, and active participation in the provision of necessary funds. The Board has ultimate responsibility to determine policies deemed to be necessary for the administration and development of Special Olympics Oklahoma, in accordance with its stated mission and purposes. Directors shall serve for three-year terms and may serve a total of three consecutive terms.
Indirect Public Support HelpIndirect public support represents revenue received through solicitation campaigns. This includes funding United Way and other federated fundraising organizations, but does not include donor designated contributions.
Earned Revenue HelpEarned revenue represents income generated in direct exchange for a product or service.Earned income includes income from government contracts.
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1000 N. Broadway Ave., Oklahoma City, OK 73102