Our Mission

Special Olympics provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.


Special Olympics teaches us that we are all vulnerable and valuable at the same time.

Our mission remains as vital today as it did when the movement was founded in 1968. Our program, however, has transcended beyond just sports. Special Olympics Virginia's year round programs in health, education, community building and sports address inactivity, injustice, intolerance and social isolation by encouraging and empowering people with intellectual disabilities.

There are nearly a quarter of a million people in Virginia with intellectual disabilities and about 8 million without. Our goal is to reach out to every one of them. In the coming years, our strategy places greater emphasis on uniting youth with and without disabilities. We will also create opportunities for families, teachers, businesses, law enforcement, celebrities, dignitaries and others to band together to change attitudes and support our athletes.

Our vision is to inspire the First Unified Generation. Join us!

Join Us

Want to be an athlete? A coach? A volunteer? A supporter?

Find out what's happening near you, and help us transform lives through the joy of sport.

Find Special Olympics Near You