Our Story

Our Mission

Our mission is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.

Our Vision

Our vision is an inclusive world for all, driven by the power of sport, through which people with intellectual disabilities live active, healthy, and fulfilling lives.

Our History

The Inclusion Revolution…

The Special Olympics movement all began in the 1950s and early 1960s, when Eunice Kennedy Shriver saw how unjustly and unfairly people with intellectual disabilities were treated. She also saw that many children with intellectual disabilities didn’t even have a place to play. She decided to take action. This action started as a summer day camp in her own backyard then morphed into the first international Special Olympic Summer Games taking place in Chicago in July of 1968. From this first games, the movement has grown to provide opportunities for individuals with ID in 193 countries, serving 5.4 million athletes.


In 1970 not long after the first International Special Olympics Summer Games, Special Olympics Montana was founded. The movement began with SOMT hosting its first-ever State Summer Games in Billings, MT for around 400 athletes. In those 50 years, the organization has grown to serve over 3,000 athletes statewide offer 13 sports and over 25 competitions year-round.

Our Reach

Making an Impact!

Yearly Special Olympics Montana tracks data on its athletes and volunteers to produce an annual reach report. This report is a great snapshot of all the amazing work being done across the state throughout the year.

2021 Snapshot: 


Athletes Competing:


Competitions Offered:




2022-2024 Strategic Plan


Special Olympics changes attitudes and behaviors through sport. We do it by showcasing the gifts and talents of people with ID, creating friendships and demonstrating the best of the human spirit.


This Plan has two goals:

GOAL A- Improve local sports participation and well-being to strengthen communities.

GOAL B- Remove barriers to inclusion and expand reach through digital technology.


Three strategies will lead to the achievement of these goals:
Strategy 1- Improve quality and reach of local programming
Strategy 2- Empower athlete leaders and other change-makers
Strategy 3- Foster inclusive practices and settings


All of this will be made possible through four enablers:
Enabler 1- Digitize the Movement
Enabler 2- Diversify Revenue
Enabler 3- Build the Brand
Enabler 4- Drive Excellence (People and Practices)

Reveal the Champion in All of Us Endowment!

The Future is Inclusion…


In 2021 Special Olympics Montana announced that it had hit its goal of securing a $10 million endowment fund for the organization. These funds will help offset its annual operating budget and provide support to local areas, teams, and competitions for years to come.