Special Olympics Florida – Collier County extends sincere thanks to the San Marco Knights of Columbus #6344 for their generous donation of $8,346 to support our athletes and our programs. The generous donation was made possible due the fundraising efforts of the Knights of Columbus during their Tootsie Roll Drive, which supports programs, including Special Olympics, that improve the quality of life for people with disabilities. The San Marco Knights of Columbus presented Special Olympics Florida – Collier County with the check at Area 9 Summer Games in March. Volunteers from the San Marco Knights also assisted with food preparation for the athletes and volunteers at the games.
Special Olympics Florida – Collier County, founded in 1972, provides a yearround program of physical fitness, sports training, and athletic competition for children and adults eight years of age and older with intellectual disabilities, all at no cost to the athletes and their families. The organization welcomes competitors at all ability levels. Athletes are assigned to competition divisions based on age, gender, and actual performance.
After training in a sport for eight to ten weeks, athletes compete first at the county level with other athletes from Collier. At the next level, Area Games, Collier teams compete alongside those from neighboring counties. Any athlete of any athletic ability level who wins first place in his or her division at Area Games is automatically eligible to be selected to advance to State Games.
Local sports include aquatics, golf, bowling, basketball, track and field, cycling, soccer, bocce, tennis, flag football, and standup paddle. These programs are possible because of the dedication of hundreds of volunteers who organize, coach, publicize, raise funds, and administer the organization. All financial support for Special Olympics Florida – Collier County comes from local businesses, organizations, and individuals.