What is Project Unify?
Project UNIFY is a year-long project to activate young people across the country in an effort to promote school communities where all young people are agents of change – fostering respect, dignity and advocacy for people with intellectual disabilities. Special Olympics believes that through sports young people can make a difference in friendships, schools and communities. Project UNIFY promotes a cultural shift and positions Special Olympics as a leading cause among youth – as important, not just “nice,” and as relevant to each of us, not just for “them.” In addition, Project UNIFY leadership activities will help develop the next generation of leaders and advocates for individuals with intellectual disabilities.
How will participating in Project Unify help my Special Olympics Program?
Project Unify offers a means to expand or to begin your Special Olympics program through stipends for Local Coordinators, money for equipment, uniforms and supplies and support from Special Olympics Georgia staff via games planning, coaches clinics and fundraising opportunities.
Who can participate in Project Unify?
Any school aged children enrolled in a school system with or without disabilities. There are many different components to Project Unify, each with the goal to promote school communities where all youth are agents of change at school an din their communities..
What do I have to do as Local Coordinator to receive the Project Unify stipend?
Complete a Project Unify Local Coordinator agreement, sign up at least 10 new youth (Special Olympics athletes or youth without disabilities, depending on which component you choose) for any component or Project Unify, hold or attend at least one event where those youth participate, complete a basic Pre-Post Skills Test for at least 10 of your new participants and fill out a short SOGA Evaluation.
Would expanding my Special Olympics Traditional Program or starting a new Traditional Program qualify me for Project Unify?
A Special Olympics Traditional Program is a sports program for individuals with intellectual disabilities who are 8 years of age and older. By beginning a new Special Olympics Traditional Program with at least 10 new athletes, or growing the Traditional Program you already have in place by at least 10 new athletes and completing the requirements of the Project Unify Local Coordinator listed above you can qualify for Project Unify.
What is the Unified Sports component of Project Unify?
Unified Sports brings together athletes with and without intellectual disabilities who are of similar age and ability who train and compete on the same team. By beginning a new Unified Sports Team with at least 10 new athletes and partners, or building your existing Unified Sports program by 10, and completing the requirements of the Project Unify Local Coordinator listed above you qualify for Project Unify.
What is the Young Athletes component of Project Unify?
Young Athletes is an innovative sports play program for children with intellectual disabilities, designed to introduce them to the world of sports prior to the eligibility age of eight. Children learn the basic skills needed to play sports. By beginning a new Young Athlete program with at least 10 new athletes or growing your current Young Athletes program by 10, and completing the Project Unify Local Coordinator job requirements listed above you qualify for Project Unify.
What is the Get Into It curriculum component of Project Unify?
Get Into It is a curriculum for students with and without disabilities. Students will learn about the Special Olympics experience and all of its positive messages. They will come to appreciate the critical role of service learning. More importantly students will be invited to make a difference themselves. By presenting the Get Into It curriculum in your classroom and completing the Project Unify Local Coordinator job requirements listed above you qualify for Project Unify.
What and when is the R-Word Campaign and how does it tie in to Project Unify?
The R-Word Campaign is to help eliminate the use of the R-word (Retard) in everyday speech. At an R-Word Campaign or Rally, students pledge to eliminate the use of the R-word. Since Project UNIFY promotes a cultural shift and positions Special Olympics as a leading cause among youth, eliminating the R-Word is an important component. By holding an R-Word Campaign at your school and completing the necessary job requirements you qualify for Project Unify.
What is Fans in the Stands and how does it tie in to Project Unify?
Fans in the Stands involves a group of students supporting the athletes by cheering them on from the stands using posters, pom poms, slap sticks and other materials. Fans in the Stands is another great way to get students involved easily.