Special Olympics Massachusetts Inc

A nonprofit organization

68 donors

Mission Statement

To provide year-round sports training and competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for all children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, prepare for entry into school and community programs, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in the sharing of gifts, skills and friendships with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.



Special Olympics sprang from the simple philosophy that all people benefit from participation in sports. In the early 1960's, Eunice Kennedy Shriver held a day camp for people with intellectual disabilities and through encouragement and instruction, children and adults with intellectual disabilities proved themselves more athletically capable than anyone had thought possible. They also enjoyed many other benefits - physical, social, and psychological. Mrs. Shriver organized the First International Special Olympics Games, which were held in 1968 at Soldier Field in Chicago. At those first Games, 1,000 athletes from the United States and Canada competed in track and field and aquatics.

Today, in the true spirit of Eunice Kennedy Shriver, led by her son Timothy Shriver, Special Olympics is the world's largest year-round program of physical fitness, sports training, and athletic competition for people with intellectual disabilities and/or closely related developmental disabilities. Close to 3.3 million athletes participate, with athletes in every state of the U.S. and in over 160 countries around the world. What started out as a day camp has rapidly developed into an organization of international significance, and Special Olympics has indeed become "A World of Winners."


Purpose and Benefits

Through successful experiences in sports, SOMA athletes gain confidence and build positive self-images, which go with them into their homes, classrooms, jobs, and communities.

Special Olympics was chartered by the Governor in 1971 to meet the needs of citizens with intellectual disabilities throughout the state of Massachusetts. SOMA is organized into three balanced levels: Local, Sectional, and State.

The statewide program supports 12,933 athletes and Unified Partners who are assisted by 1,281 coaches and 9,109 volunteers.

Organization Data


Organization name

Special Olympics Massachusetts Inc

Tax id (EIN)



Health Community


512 Forest Street
Marlborough, MA 01752