Special Olympics cannot function without the time, energy, commitment, and enthusiasm of the many volunteers who accomplish a wide variety of tasks. Special Olympics Area P is an entirely volunteer run organization and relies on volunteers at all levels to ensure that every athlete is provided with a quality sports training and competition experience. Whether as certified head coaches, assistant coaches, site coordinators, administrators, or in other support capacities, volunteering for Special Olympics can create lifelong friendships and rewards of unique value.

VOLUNTEER CLASSIFICATIONS

Special Olympics Pennsylvania has two different classifications of volunteers:

Class A Volunteers

  • Anyone who is or may be in immediate contact with athletes including the following roles:
    • Coaches
    • Unified Sports Partners
    • Members of local program management
    • Members of a Games Organizing Committee 
  • Class A volunteers are required to have two background checks completed before assuming their role:
    • The PA State Police and National Background Check
    • The PA Child Neglect/Abuse Registry Check

Note: Allow +/- 45 minutes to complete both clearances in one sitting

  • In addition to the background checks, Special Olympics also requires that all Class A volunteers 16 and over complete the following online training modules: General Orientation, Concussion Training, and Protective Behaviors Training.

Class B Volunteers

Step by step instructions for becoming a volunteer:

Coaches

Coaches play a unique and indispensable role in Special Olympics programs around the world. More than 50,000 certified Special Olympics coaches in the United States provide Special Olympics athletes with the sports skills and competitive spirit that define a true athlete.

Coaches not only provide skills training for athletes, but they are also role models and character builders. Coaches give Special Olympics athletes the most immediate awareness of their own worth, ability, courage and capacity to grow and improve.

As a coach, your attitude toward sports and competition will directly affect your athletes. Special Olympics believes that the athletic experience and the camaraderie shared by teammates is what benefits an athlete the most. Coaches should be aware of how they influence their athletes and should follow the guidelines presented in this section in all aspects of their interactions with athletes.

As you accept the role of a Special Olympics coach, you hold the key to a promising future for so many athletes. This section gives specific insight on the responsibilities of being a coach as well as some valuable information to make your experience rewarding for both you and your athletes.

We encourage anyone interested in coaching to visit the Special Olympics Pennsylvania website which has more information on training programs and how to become a coach.

Additional Information

For additional information on becoming a volunteer with Special Olympics Area P, please see the Become a Volunteer instructions located on the Special Olympics Pennsylvania website. Please also feel free to contact our program manager with any questions at areapmanager@gmail.com.