Changing Service through a Leadership Summit
Morgan and Norraine are Special Olympics Youth Leaders in American Samoa who have teamed up with local National Honor Societies and Special Education programs to create a program that will serve students throughout their school and community. Together, the Youth Leaders from the respective programs will work together to create Unified community service projects where students with and without intellectual disabilities come together in service. Unified service not only enhances overall student interaction but also promotes inclusion and acceptance within the community. Morgan and Norraine’s Youth Innovation Project will grow Unified service and the two will lead an “ATHLEADER Summit” (athlete/youth leader) to change the way service is conducted in their community.
Morgan and Norraine will recruit for the ATHLEADER Summit by contacting schools already have a National Honor Society program and a Special Education program. By inviting these students to a youth summit, conversations will start among the young people and create opportunities for youth leaders with and without intellectual disabilities to grow and excel. The legacy of the summit will endure for years as these two organizations work together and join in local community service projects. Morgan and Norraine are excited to start this project and bring two communities into one. They love the opportunity to be local pioneers with a new idea as inclusive and innovative as the ATHLEADER Summit.
Being part of the Unified Generation is an exciting opportunity for Morgan and Norraine. As American Samoans, they have a unique culture and love of communities close to them including family and village. Being part of this movement means expanding their values into a broader sense and “seeing and treating everyone as equals.”