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Our Mission

The mission of Special Olympics Michigan is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.

Athletes develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage and experience joy while participating in the sharing of gifts, skills and friendship among their families, Special Olympics athletes and the community. The athletes achieve their dreams with the support of caring volunteers, coaches, family members and staff. Donations from Michigan citizens and businesses provide funding for the program.

SOMI Quick Facts

Based on our 2023 Census numbers, Special Olympics Michigan is home to...

  • 19,305 athletes (children and adults with intellectual disabilities as well as Unified Partners and students) participate in Special Olympics Michigan with programs provided at no cost to athletes or their families
  • 24 sports are offered
  • 6 state-level competitions, 4 district basketball tournaments and more than 399 local and regional competitions statewide
  • 6,028 volunteers
  • 2,044 active certified coaches
  • Special Olympics Michigan is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization supported almost entirely through corporate funding and individual gifts and is a four star-rated charity by Charity Navigator

Athlete Participants and Communities

At competitions athletes are placed into divisions based on age, gender, and ability. Competitions take place at local, regional, state, national, and world levels.

For a small investment in sports equipment and volunteers' time, Special Olympics has the potential to become a vehicle for bringing people together, changing attitudes, and engaging a portion of the community that is otherwise forgotten.

In the United States, 52% of Special Olympics athletes are employed; approximately half of these athletes are "competitively employed" - employed alongside people without intellectual disabilities.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Statement

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion are at the heart of all that we do at Special Olympics Michigan as we come together to promote dignity and unity to create a world where everyone belongs. We will value and celebrate our differences, understanding that diversity and inclusion create an organization that delivers better results, with love and compassion, for the athletes and communities we serve.