Welcome to Special Olympics Illinois!

You are about to become part of an exciting training and competition program and will serve an integral role in transforming the lives of people with intellectual disabilities. Special Olympics participation encompasses over 19 official sports, fundraising events, event committees, coaching opportunities, Young Athletes sports play programs and community initiatives – truly a spectrum of choices! So let’s get started!

Read more about our Volunteer Opportunities.

How to Get Involved as a Volunteer

There are two easy ways you can sign up to be a volunteer with Special Olympics Illinois!

  1. Sign up as a general volunteer (you will only be contacted when we have volunteer positions open matching your interests or location). If you have any questions please contact Aubrey Deerwester.
  2. Look through our calendar of events and sign up now for an event in your area


Volunteers are the core of the Special Olympics program and we could not exist today without the time, energy, education and commitment of our volunteers. Special Olympics Illinois relies on people of all ages to help in every aspect of the program – both at the local and state level.

It’s pretty great when we can have fun and bring something as great as this to so many people who deserve it.  This was my second year and I’ll be back.
-Jerry Arntzen

Anyone 10 years or older can be a general Special Olympics volunteer and coaches must be at least 14 years of age or older. For more information about coaching, see the Coaches section of the website.

Volunteer Information

Once you sign up as a volunteer you will be a representative of Special Olympics Illinois and as such we ask that you read and follow our Volunteer Code of Conduct.

If you have additional questions on Special Olympics Illinois and volunteering please email Aubrey Deerwester, you can also contact her by phone at 309-888-2551 or 1-800-394-0562.

Volunteer Job Descriptions

Transforming Lives


Undefeated Mattoon/Charleston Hornets Win District Championship

 The Mattoon/Charleston Hornets basketball team was unsure of what to expect when arriving at the Special Olympics Illinois District H Basketball competition on Sunday, Jan. 31, at the Wesclin High ...

Read More


Income Tax Check-off

Check the box, change a life! This tax season, do something Special by making a donation when you complete your Illinois Income Tax.  Your contribution helps a current or future Special ...

Read More


Special Olympics Lottery Tickets

The Illinois Lottery and Special Olympics Illinois are proud to announce the 2016 Lottery game to benefit Special Olympics Illinois. This year’s $3 scratch-off ticket will continue to help Special ...

Read More

2014 Bloomington Plunge RS-9302

SOARing For a Great Cause

Ritchie D’Cotsa of Bloomington has been plunging since 2011 when his friend, Lisa Hayward, recruited him. At that time, D’Costa’s son Blair was hospitalized in the ICU. Hayward printed a ...

Read More


Tech Athletics Hosts Special Olympics High School Basketball

Originally posted by the Illinois Institute of Technology CHICAGO, Ill. – Last Wednesday and Thursday, the Illinois Institute of Technology Athletic Department and its Student-Athlete Advisory Committee played host to Special ...

Read More

Photo by Jim Spaniol

Father and Daughter Duo Create Tradition at Plunge

Courtney Lindsey and her father, Steve, have been participating in the Decatur Polar Plunge for 13 years together. The annual Plunge has created a special bond between the two. Lindsey originally ...

Read More

Chicago Fire Unified Soccer

Chicago Fire Soccer Club, SOILL Partner to Create Unified Sports Soccer Team

Special Olympics Illinois has an exciting announcement to make!  We are again partnering with the Chicago Fire Soccer Club to create a Chicago Fire Unified Soccer All Star team. This ...

Read More