Special Olympics Oklahoma is returning to Norman on April 14 and Student Life is hosting a service day to help provide a good experience for the participants, their families and the students themselves.
According to specialolympics.org the Special Olympics has been providing people with intellectual disabilities with continuing opportunities to get fit, demonstrate their courage and have fun since 1968.
Amy Reynolds, first year and Student Life program coordinator, said students will meet in the Student Life office at 7:45 a.m., and leave OCCC at 8 a.m. Reynolds said students should be returning to campus around 3 p.m. Time spent at the Olympics counts towards the civic honors program at OCCC.
Student Life Director Erin Logan said she thought the opportunity the Special Olympics offers those with intellectual needs can be helpful in establishing personal strengths.
“So often they are defined by their challenges, the Special Olympics allows them to be acknowledged for their strengths. And to be a part of that is life changing,” Logan said.
Students are anticipated to assist with events, concessions and morale.
“They train so hard for this and we want to give them the ultimate experience.” Reynolds said. “So whatever they need us to do from high-fiving the contestants and encouraging them to manning concession stands, whatever they need us to do.
“We’ve been partnering with the Special Olympics as a service agency for quite a while,” Reynolds said. “But this is the first year that we have scheduled a service day with them.
“They were so excited to be working with us, so we’re looking forward to providing our students with that opportunity.”
Reynolds said there has been a large amount of support from students and faculty.
“In the spring, Special Olympics hosts their big athletic event and when you have a big event like that you need the manpower and the volunteers to help it be successful,” she said.
Reynolds said approximately 40 to 50 students and faculty members have signed up for the service day, yet there is room for more and no student will be turned away that wishes to help.
For more information or to sign up for the service day, contact Student Life at 405-682-1611, ext. 7523.
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