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athlete lead
Athletes are the heart of Special Olympics. Our athletes are children and adults with intellectual disabilities from all around the world—5.6 million and counting! They are finding success, joy and friendship as part of our global community. They're also having lots of fun!

West All-Stars Win 2023 Special Olympics Unified All-Star Game

With the ball sitting at midfield of Glenn Warner Soccer Facility at the Naval Academy surrounded by a breathtaking backdrop of the Severn River with beautiful sailboats one-by-one sailing into port, it’s the perfect weather for one of the biggest events of the year. There’s a boat of Navy sailors docking in the distance. It’s a day of celebration for inclusion, for MLS, and for Special Olympics.
3 Min Read

“An Amazing Feeling”—Swimmer Wins Gold, Twice

"Nobody judges me or my disability. It's where I feel happy and can be myself."
1 Min Read

Despite Tough Competition, Teen Gymnast Earns Silver

Artistic gymnast Li Xiang of China has been competing at Special Olympics World Games since he was 11 years old.
1 Min Read

Breaking Boundaries with Sport

Mariam Sylla powerfully smashes the table tennis ball across the table. She looks extremely concentrated and focuses all her energy on the game.
1 Min Read

Opening a Door to the World from Special Olympics Lesotho

He’s just one athlete on the podium—but you’ll never believe his story. Before Special Olympics, he wouldn’t have dreamed of stepping up to a podium stage to celebrate winning a medal.
2 Min Read

A Life Pace

Special Olympics Athlete Kamogelo Moncho, 28, South Africa, is bringing home a gold medal in the men's 5000m and a bronze medal in the 1500m but it is the sport itself that brings him the most pride.
1 Min Read

A Tale of Two Goalkeepers as Kenya Women’s Football Team Clinches Gold

“All Inclusive,” goalkeeper Marystella Ndolwa, one of the athletes profiled in the film, was hesitant to make any predictions about Special Olympics Kenya women’s football/soccer team’s upcoming match.
1 Min Read

Guatemalan Soccer Star Leads Special Olympics Guatemala Futsal Team to Gold in Berlin

Renowned Guatemalan national team member and international soccer player, Maria Fernanda Rossell, is making an impact on and off the pitch as a coach at Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023.
1 Min Read

Bikes Across Borders

On the surface, cycling may seem like an individual sport, but it takes a team to get competitors across the finish line.
3 Min Read

Head-to-Head in Judo

“It feels wonderful!” That’s what Mostafa Abdelmaguid from Special Olympics Egypt had to say about participating in his first World Games.
1 Min Read

Caroline Tangitau Sweeps Silver in Powerlifting

Caroline Tangitau traveled more than 11,027 miles/17,500 km from New Zealand to Germany to participate in the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 in women’s powerlifting.
1 Min Read

Sana Won’t Stop Running or Smiling

Sana (she only has one name like Madonna) was all smiles before her 400m Level C preliminary race at the 2023 Special Olympics World Games in Berlin.
2 Min Read