Squamish’s Randy Scott, along with 108 special Olympics athletes and 35 volunteer staff and coaches will be in Austria from March 14 to 25 for the 2017 Special Olympics World Winter Games.
Scott, a Squamish resident for over 20 years, has been a volunteer alpine skiing coach with Special Olympics B.C. (SOBC) for 29 years, and the 2017 World Games will mark the sixth time he has served as a coach for Special Olympics Team Canada.
“I was walking down a hall after a race and saw a Special Olympics office with a picture of an athlete,” Scott said when asked what inspired him to get involved. “I haven’t looked back since.”
Scott grew up alpine ski racing and said that he comes from a family of volunteering. Working with disabled athletes has made me a better man, said Scott. “It has changed my life. It’s life altering.”
The Special Olympics Team Canada is the third-largest team at the games and will be competing in six different sports: alpine skiing, cross country skiing, figure skating, floor hockey, snowshoeing and speed skating. Each athlete will compete in two events.
Canada is the team to beat, said Scott. The World Games in Austria will bring together 3,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities and 1,100 coaches from as many as 110 countries.
“We are very proud of our Team Canada athletes, staff, and coaches,” says Sharon Bollenbach, CEO of Special Olympics Canada. “Our programs reach far beyond just competitions and world class athletes, taking us into communities across the country, enriching the daily lives of over 42,000 Canadians with an intellectual disability, through the transformative power of sport.”
“It’s a phenomenal movement,” said Scott.
“I know it’s cliché but I learn more from them than they could ever learn from me.”
You can follow team Canada on their journey to Austria by visiting www.TeamCanada.SpecialOlympics.ca. To learn more about team members from B.C. visit www.specialolympics.bc.ca/news/Team%20Canada%202017 or find them on Facebook and Instagram @specialolympicsbc
SOBC Squamish currently offers youth programs for children with intellectual disabilities ages two to 11 on Sundays at Quest University. They also offer a swimming program on Sundays from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Brennan Park Recreation Centre.
If you are interested in volunteering contact Hannah Bauer, the volunteer coordinator at email@example.com.
If you would like to participate as an athlete or have any questions about the programs offered, please contact Owen Robinson at 403-688-0011 or firstname.lastname@example.org.