Eunice Kennedy Shriver

When Eunice Kennedy Shriver founded Special Olympics in 1968, she envisioned a program of athletic competition for people with mental and developmental disabilities that sidelined prejudice and substituted opportunity and understanding. Through her advocacy, she has brought to millions of lives what all people deserve: A chance to experience self-worth, a chance to connect with their fellow man, a chance to live without walls.

Social issues Eunice Kennedy Shriver addressed:

  • Mental and Intellectual disabilities
  • Inclusion
  • Health

Social issues that need to be addressed today:

  • Mental and Intellectual Disabilities (ID) - Only 44% of adults with ID aged 21-64 are in the labor force. This is compared to 83% of working-age adults without disabilities who are in the labor force. Source
  • Inclusion - A multi-national study commissioned by Special Olympics shows that the general population lacks an appreciation of the range of capabilities of individuals with intellectual disabilities, and therefore have low expectations of how much people with mental disabilities can achieve. Source
  • Health - People with disabilities can find it more difficult to eat healthy, control their weight, and be physically active. Source