Our next Abstrakt Gives Back Day highlight: Special Olympics of Missouri!
The Special Olympics is the world’s largest sports organization with nearly 4 million athletes in over 170 countries. 15,000 of those are here in Missouri. The organization focuses on initiatives to activate youth and engage those with intellectual disabilities. They strive to build communities and improve the health of those athletes through the power of sports to help them discover new strengths, skills, and abilities.
Special Olympics has been spreading the message for over 40 years that people with intellectual disabilities can and will succeed when given the chance. They train and compete in 21 Olympic-style sports, and have fun while doing so.
Special Olympics was one of the nonprofit organizations in Abstrakt’s Gives Back Day last year with some awesome volunteers from Abstrakt. Greg Heins volunteered at the Special Olympic Kickball game. Heins said his favorite part of the day was getting to see some of the athletes do things they never thought were possible due to their circumstances.
Heins said, “The most touching part of the day was in two different situations throughout the day. First was being able to help Brennan pitch and have fun. For most kids his age, pitching in kickball is an everyday simple task. But after hearing his mom say she was filming him because he has never done this before, and she wasn’t sure if he would ever be able to do it again. To have a child go through life with struggles that makes pitching in kickball a task to “conquer” whether it physically or emotionally must be extremely tough. Having the opportunity to be a part of him doing this was a feeling that cannot be duplicated. The second way I was touched was back at Abstrakt’s Reception when Christa came to the after party. She was so full of love for all of us that played kickball with her that day. She was so full of love for everybody and kept displaying it, and her parents were so grateful for us participating they were brought to tears multiple times.”
We’re excited to make new memories with Special Olympics Missouri at this year’s Abstrakt Gives Back Day!