The other day I was asked this question – “If Special Olympics New Mexico were to go through an audit to determine its greatest value, what would you say that would be?” If you are reading this, take a moment and answer that question for yourself.
I believe our greatest value at every level of our organization and in every community we are in – is our RELATIONSHIPS.
We are an organization of mutually beneficial relationships built on the very core of how our athletes go through life – treating other people like we all hope to be treated.
When I think of my own list of valued relationships, I think of our Special Olympics athletes and their family members, who have opened my eyes and heart to see and feel more; our staff, Board of Directors and Area Directors who whole-heartedly commit to our vision and mission; the long list of coaches and chaperones who tirelessly give of time they don’t really have to make our athletes better and keep them safe; the people who represent the businesses and civic organizations who value what our athletes bring to society; the volunteers who show up to help ensure a quality Games or fundraising event; the teachers and school administrators along with the regular education students who make school a place of acceptance and friendship; the health professionals who screen our athletes to make sure they are able to participate in the best health possible; the law enforcement officers and their families who support our athletes by raising money and awareness for Special Olympics through the Torch Run; the donors whose hearts are moved to give because they know they can help make a difference; the intercollegiate and high school coaches, athletes, and officials who stand with us in the power of sport that changes lives; and lastly, the government officials who fight for the rights of those with intellectual disabilities because they know it’s the right thing to do.
This isn’t just an arbitrary list of groups who work with Special Olympics in some capacity. Each category brings to mind some of the nicest and best people I’ve ever known. Relationships like these make hard days easier, good days even better, and every day life more meaningful.