RICHMOND, VA – (Wednesday, September 18, 2013) – The Richmond Kickers are pleased to announce a partnership between Special Olympics Virginia and RVAccess, a program designed to offer children, ages 4-19, with physical and mental disabilities the opportunity to experience the gratification and excitement of soccer. Through this new alliance, the Richmond Kickers and the Special Olympics Virginia will expand upon and enhance currently available adaptive soccer programs in the Richmond area.
“We are excited to partner with RVAccess for the ten-week soccer skills development program,” commented Kristen Jones, James River Region Director of Special Olympics. “By working together, we hope to provide quality soccer training to youth with disabilities within our community, while creating an inclusive and fun environment for the athletes, buddies, and volunteers.”
The Special Olympics Virginia soccer teams will practice and play games on the fields adjacent to the RVAccess sessions, giving the two organizations the ability to share resources and buddies while creating a sense of community. As their skills develop, RVAccess athletes will have the opportunity to progress to small-sided games and even compete at the state level with the Special Olympics Virginia teams. With this partnership, both RVAccess and Special Olympics Virginia are able to serve a broader spectrum of the community, becoming more inclusive than ever before.
"RVAccess and the Richmond Kickers are thrilled to partner with Special Olympics Virginia," commented Carter Blair, RVAccess Director. "This new partnership provides both organizations with the ability to grow the programs throughout the Richmond region, allowing participants to engage in meaningful soccer experiences that connect families and kids in our community."
Through the generous support of private donors, RVAccess is a cost-free program, offering a fun, challenging, and exciting way for athletes of all abilities to play soccer. Each session is tailored to the individuals’ needs ranging from fun activities to small-sided games and athletes will be partnered with a buddy to work one on one. Using an assortment of large and small soccer balls, hula-hoops, cones, and games the athlete learns soccer skills in a fun and supportive group environment. The buddies encourage the athletes to participate to the best of their abilities, and foster the love of the game. The athlete-buddy relationship creates patience and compassion which often transcend the confines of the soccer field. To register your child as an athlete for the RVAccess fall season or for information on volunteering or contributing, visit www.RichmondKickers.com/RVAccess.
About Special Olympics Virginia
Special Olympics Virginia is a year-round program of sports training and athletic competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Through work in sports, health education and community building, Special Olympics is addressing inactivity, injustice, intolerance and social isolation by encouraging and empowering people with intellectual disabilities which leads to a more welcoming and inclusive society. www.specialolympicsva.org.