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17-25 June 2023

Young Athletes

Special Olympics Young Athletes is a sport and play program for children with and without intellectual disabilities (ID), ages 2 to 7 years old.
The program introduces children to basic sport skills like running, kicking and throwing. Young Athletes offers families, teachers, caregivers and people from the community the chance to share the joy of sports with all children.

Everyone benefits from Young Athletes

Motor skills


Children with ID who took part in an eight-week Young Athletes curriculum saw seven month's development in motor skill. This is compared to a three month gain in motor skills for children who did not participate.
Social, emotional and learning skills

Parents and teachers who took part in the Young Athletes curriculum said the children learned skills that they will use in school. The children were more enthusiastic, confident and social.
Expectations


Young Athletes provides opportunities for families to come together to share challenges and rewards. Family members say that the program raised their hopes for their child's future.
Sport readiness


Young Athletes helps children develop important movement and sport skills. These skills get them ready to take part in sports and recreation activities when they are older.
Acceptance


Inclusive play has a benefit for children without ID as well. It helps them to better understand and accept others.
The photo shows a happy looking young boy who participates in the Special Olympics Young Athletes Program.
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On the photo, there is a young girl sitting on the ground and playing with a big purple ball. She takes part in the Young Athletes Program of the World Games Abu Dhabi in 2019.
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The photo shows two boys crawling through colorful hoops during the Young Athletes Program.
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The photo shows a group of kids at the Young Athletes Program in 2019. The girl in the center smiles happily.
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On the photo, there is a small boy hitting the ball with a hockey stick at a Young Athletes station.
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The photo shows a young girl and a Young Athletes volunteer at a Basketball station. The girl is throwing the ball towards the hoop.
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On the photo, there is a happy looking young girl who raises her hands in the air while participating in the Young Athletes Program.
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On the photo, there is a young boy crawling through colorful hoops during the Young Athletes Program of 2019.
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The photo shows a young girl who takes part in the Young Athletes Program. She looks concentrated.
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The photo shows a station of the Young Athletes Program, where childrin jump over hurdles.
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More information about the Young Athletes Program as part of the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023 will be available on this page soon.

If you have any questions or are interested in advance, please contact us directly: claudia.southwell@berlin2023.org