By: Carly Levy
Last Friday at TD Bank in Coral Springs, customers were greeted by athletes with the Special Olympics who gave them small gifts as gratitude for their donation to the world’s largest sports organization for people with intellectual disabilities.
All over the country, TD Bank employees, customers, friends and family attended the Special Olympics Fundraising Campaign to support the goal of raising more than $1 million. So far, $8.7 million has been raised for the organization.
Unfortunately, due the heavy rains, the Trading Card Day event was cancelled at the Coral springs location. This is where the athletes hand out cards with their pictures on them that are similar to baseball cards. Fortunately, they had plenty of other items to hand out to the customers thanking them for their donations such as pink lemonade, bracelets, hand sanitizer, key chains and lollipops.
Two Special Olympics athletes made an appearance at the bank located at 2600 N University Drive: Diego Sangunetti and Jason Andra. Sangunetti competes in swimming, skiing, surfing and cycling and Andra competes in soccer, basketball, and is one of the leaders of the Special Olympics.
The Special Olympics caters to those with different disabilities, and the Florida chapter does not charge its athletes nor their families a fee for participation. They are funded through individuals, businesses and civic groups throughout the state.
Sandra Sangunetti, the mother of Diego, explained how important the Special Olympics was to her son for the past nine years. She said that it has taught him how to establish his independence, create a bond with his coach and teammates, and to put his athletic skills to good use.
“We are a small circle and in that circle are branches.” said Sandra. “It is our job to make these branches grow to tell everyone about the Special Olympics.”
Through the power and joy of sports, the Special Olympics empowers people with and without intellectual disabilities to play, work, and create communities of acceptance. Your donation helps fund the general efforts and programming of the local Special Olympics chapter.
Carly Levy was born and raised in Coral Springs. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Film and minored in theatre. Her goal is to leave a mark on the world with her writing in any way that she can.