Q & A with Special Olympics Lloydminster 

Special Olympics Lloydminster, a Sask Lotteries funded organization, prioritizes the accessibility of sport in their local community. They have subsidized fees and will cover costs for athletes and their families who otherwise could not participate. The organization offers diverse programs, which allows every individual the opportunity to enjoy sport at their desired level. 

Marianne Witzaney, Volunteer Coordinator with Special Olympics Lloydminster, spoke with Sask Lotteries to provide more insight about Special Olympics Lloydminster through a Q & A.  

What opportunities are offered by your organization?  

Our organization offers Bowling and a Fitness/Walking Track Program. We are the only sport and fitness organization for individuals with intellectual disabilities to participate in. We have 85 registered athletes.  Not all our athletes can bowl so we started a Fitness/Walking track program.  

We have 60 enrolled in our bowling program and 25 in the Fitness/Walking track program.  

Our bowlers are invited to join us on the track every Thursday evening, with an average of 35 athletes per week participating in the Fitness/Walking track program. Both programs provide physical and social opportunities that are essential for the well-being and mental health of our participants. 

How has Sask Lotteries funding impacted Special Olympics Lloydminster? 

All our participants live on a fixed income, and many do not have family to help them out. Funding from Sask Lotteries subsidizes over half of their bowling fees and fitness/walking track fees. As a result, Special Olympics Lloydminster has been able to be all inclusive and provide a strong program. 

How have you seen participants benefit from Sask Lotteries funding?  

Because of Sask Lotteries funding we have been able to provide a strong bowling and fitness/walking track program and have been able to make it all inclusive. We still do have some individuals that cannot afford to pay any fees and through our own fundraising we can help these individuals out.   

With Sask Lotteries funding we are able to make the programs more competitive by providing small prizes and incentives for the athletes. 

Can you share a memory from your time with Special Olympics Lloydminster? 

In our Fitness/Walking track program, we have participants that walk, run & others who participate in wheelchairs. Every week we track the number of laps the participants do and encourage them to do more. One of our athletes is 80 years old and had a serious injury a few years ago and now requires a walker for support.   

She says she needs to walk 10 laps every week so she can get a ribbon again this year.  She is an inspiration to all of us.