FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: November 15, 2017
Contact: Sarah Boink, Senior Director of Development
The Finish Line is providing sneakers free of charge for a Capital Region Special Olympics Unified Basketball Team
Albany, NY – On Thursday, November 16th at 10 a.m. the Special Olympics New York Unified Basketball team will be on hand at the Crossgates Mall Finish Line location to be fitted and select the team shoe to kick-off the Finish Line annual holiday campaign.
The Unified basketball team was selected to represent Special Olympics New York in the 2018 Special Olympics USA National Games to be held in Seattle, Washington in July. The team is composed of athletes with and without intellectual disabilities and will compete against unified teams from across the country. The members of the team are current students and alumni of Columbia High School and all have participated on the Unified Basketball team at Columbia.
Unified sports is a partnership between Special Olympics New York and the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) to provide interscholastic sports for students with and without intellectual disabilities. The program piloted in 2012 in Section 2 of NYSPHSAA with 12 schools. There are currently 129 schools participating across the state.
About the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games
The 2018 Special Olympics USA Games will be held in Seattle, Washington July 1-6, 2018. More than 4,000 participants representing all 50 states and the District of Columbia, along with the support of tens of thousands of volunteers and spectators, will compete in 14 Olympic-type team and individual sports. The 2018 Special Olympics USA Games will celebrate the Special Olympics movement and its 50th anniversary; promote the ideals of acceptance and inclusion through sport; and showcase athletes from throughout the U.S. and the abilities of people with intellectual disabilities. The 2018 USA Games will also highlight Special Olympics’ work in sport, education, health and community-building. Special Olympics New York will be sending 52 athletes who will represent the state in volleyball, bocce, golf, gymnastics, powerlifting, soccer, tennis, bowling, athletics, aquatics, and unified basketball.
2017 Finish Line Holiday Fundraising Campaign
For the sixth year in a row, Finish Line will be holding its annual holiday fundraising campaign benefiting Special Olympics from November 15 – December 31, 2017 at over 560 Finish Line stores across the United States*. Finish Line is a national partner of Special Olympics who provides robust volunteer support across the country and generates funds annually through its holiday fundraising campaign. Customers will be asked to make donations at check-out to benefit Special Olympics. In addition to in-store donations, customers will also be able to make online donations as well as round up their online purchases.
Special Olympics New York provides year-round sports training and competition in 22 Olympic-style sports to children and adults with intellectual disabilities at no cost to the athletes, their families or caregivers. There are 71,889 athletes and unified partners that train and compete with Special Olympics New York, the largest Special Olympics program in North America.