WAYNE COUNTY, Mich. – The Special Olympics chapter representing athletes throughout the majority of Wayne County desperately needs volunteers.
Sue Campbell says the pandemic has had an enormous impact as many of the volunteers and coaches they had did not return. It’s beginning to impact athletes, especially in the Plymouth/Canton area.
Just last week, there was a competition happening in Traverse City. Campbell says many of the athletes could not attend because they didn’t have the volunteers necessary to travel and compete.
“It’s heartbreaking,” said Campbell, “The Special Olympics is based on volunteers, everything is volunteers, and without that, we don’t have games. We don’t have athletes like Tracey being able to play.”
Tracey Jenkins has been participating in the Special Olympics since she was eight. In that time, she’s had the opportunity to participate in several different sports. She’s also made many friends who she hopes will take advantage of these opportunities because of a lack of volunteers.
“I just want my friends to be able to do the sport that they love,” said Jenkins. “It’s sad to me that they don’t have that, and they need that.”
The Special Olympics could use both coaches and volunteers. You must be 18 and older, and there is some training involved. For more information, click here.
There are opportunities to help with bowling, swimming, softball, and more.
The athletes who participate in the Special Olympics do so free of charge. If you’d like to help fundraise for athletes or participate in their Polar Plunge happening Saturday, Feb. 18, at The Belleville Yacht Club, you can find more information by clicking here.