Particular Olympics Pennsylvania Coach Receives Lifetime Achievement Award After 5 A long time of Involvement

A Special Olympics coach shakes hands with athletes on the other side of a volleyball net.

Maryellen Brown (entrance proper) congratulates Particular Olympics athletes from an opposing volleyball sport throughout the 2022 Particular Olympics USA Video games in Orlando, FL.

Within the sixth grade, Maryellen Brown, standing at simply 4’11″, received the broad bounce with a measurement of 6 ft and 1 inch. It was the primary time she had the exhilarating feeling of doing one thing athletic. Quick-forward a couple of years, and he or she started to play discipline hockey, a brand new sport to these round her. She’s at all times had a knack for attempting issues many individuals don’t know a lot about, but it surely’s a trait that led her to Particular Olympics.

With a begin in Particular Olympics shortly after the primary Particular Olympics Worldwide Summer time Video games in Chicago, Illinois in 1968, Brown noticed potential within the athletes and wished to assist them obtain their targets. Not simply in athletics – but additionally in life. Every thing she’s carried out and continues to do was celebrated by receiving the Annette Lynch Lifetime Achievement Award. The award, given to coaches nominated by people of their lives, are offered by Particular Olympics North America. It honors coaches for his or her half in enhancing the event of Particular Olympics athletes.

In 1971, whereas in highschool, Brown started her involvement with Particular Olympics Pennsylvania. “I’ve at all times felt the special-needs college students had a strategy to present their skills, however not all people thought that approach,” Brown says. “However once they participated in monitor and discipline, it solidified in my thoughts that that they had skills others might acknowledge.”

And that was the second she made the selection to review particular training, getting licensed in elementary training as nicely. Brown’s teaching journey didn’t begin till she acquired a instructing job within the Susquenita Faculty District in 1976.

“Maryellen Brown has been a frontrunner and a mentor in not solely Space M however in different applications as nicely,” Michelle Boon, the vice chairman of sports activities for Particular Olympics Pennsylvania, says. “She is at all times keen to help different coaches.”

All through the years, Brown has helped numerous volunteers turn out to be coaches. She is a clinician in 5 sports activities and has traveled throughout the state of Pennsylvania to conduct these trainings.

“I’m very humbled to obtain this lifetime achievement award,” she says with a tone of pleasure and gratitude in her voice. “I’m fairly positive I met Annette solely as soon as, and it was actually solely in passing so I actually didn’t know her complete background. However I did my analysis after I acquired the award; she’s an exceptional lady and I don’t even come near what she has contributed.”

A Special Olympics athlete and his coach stand next to each other on the sidelines. The athlete is hugging his coach and wearing a medal.

The connections Maryellen (left) makes with Particular Olympics athletes she coaches transcend the sphere of play.

However as Brown thinks concerning the effort and time folks like Lynch have put in, she enjoys understanding that unbelievable issues are being carried out for “distinctive athletes.”

Brown’s checklist of achievements is intensive. It contains volunteer of the 12 months in 1993, Particular Olympics Pennsylvania coach of the 12 months in 1995 and an induction into the Particular Olympics Pennsylvania Corridor of Fame in 2013.

As part of Particular Olympics for 51 years, Brown continues to be lively right now. She hopes to see continued alternatives in each conventional Particular Olympics and Particular Olympics Unified Sports activities®, an initiative that permits these with and with out mental disabilities to compete on the identical group. She would like to see athletes, no matter athletic capacity, get extra possibilities to compete on the USA Video games and World Video games, the group’s largest phases.

Whereas Brown has a imaginative and prescient of what she hopes the motion of inclusion seems like, it additionally carries over into future coaches and the hope she has for them.

“Preserve your coronary heart and thoughts open to an journey,” she says to future new coaches. “Whenever you open the door to Particular Olympics, you might be opening a door to journey. No observe, no competitors, no involvement is ever the identical on any given day. [New coaches] must be keen to be a sponge and be keen to study all they will about working with distinctive populations and training Particular Olympics athletes. They must be keen to allow them to, the athletes, present them their skills and to assist them, to make use of these skills to beat their challenges, to have a optimistic expertise in life in addition to in sport.”

Particular Olympics is proud to companion with Gallagher, Official Sponsor of Particular Olympics Worldwide Sport and Coach Programming. Particular Olympics and Gallagher are empowering athletes with and with out mental disabilities to face their future with confidence—on and off the enjoying discipline—by high quality teaching and sports activities coaching experiences. Because of Gallagher’s help, Particular Olympics Pennsylvania will obtain a stipend to facilitate the skilled growth of the winner and the expansion of the Coach Training Program inside Particular Olympics Pennsylvania.