The Knights of Columbus formally announced a donation to cover the costs
of athletes from the United States and Canada during their time in Los
Angeles as they participate in next year's Special Olympics World Games.
The Knights' $1.4 million sponsorship will cover the costs of food,
transportation and entertainment for every athlete from the two
countries during their time in Los Angeles.
The announcement was made by Supreme Knight Carl Anderson during a news
conference on July 14 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum at 10 a.m.
Joining him at the announcement were World Games CEO and President
Patrick McClenahan and Archbishop of Los Angeles José H. Gomez.
"The Knights of Columbus were there with Special Olympics and its
founder, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, from the very beginning," said Supreme
Knight Anderson. "Sargent Shriver, Eunice's husband, was a friend and a
proud member of the Knights of Columbus, and like him, we are here today
to continue those efforts on behalf of people with intellectual
disabilities. Our support exemplifies our commitment to the dignity of
every person, our dedication to assisting with our neighbors' needs
whatever they may be, and our deep appreciation for the great work done
by Special Olympics."
Anderson also announced that he is asking he leadership of the K of C
in each U.S. state and Canadian province to increase the number of
volunteer hours donated to Special Olympics this year.
In a 1986 letter, Eunice Kennedy Shriver reflected on the Knights' long
involvement, observing, "When a great organization like the Knights of
Columbus decides to support Special Olympics, I know that God is looking
after his children."
Patrick McClenahan, president and CEO of Special Olympics World Games
Los Angeles 2015, noted: "Anyone that is a part of the Special Olympics
movement is deeply aware of the long and generous support by the Knights
of Columbus, and today's pledge is another amazing milestone. We hope
their donation inspires other organizations to be a part of what will no
doubt be a life-changing experience for all involved in the 2015 Special
Olympic World Games."
At Monday's event, the Knights were named as a "Founding Champion of the
Also at that event, Archbishop José H. Gomez spoke and announced the
Archdiocese's spiritual support for the World Games.
"The Catholic community is happy and proud to welcome the Special
Olympics to Los Angeles," Archbishop Gomez said. "The Special Olympics
is a celebration of human dignity and a beautiful sign that our world is
truly one family drawn from peoples of every race and language. We look
forward to working with the Knights of Columbus, and we pray that this
competition will promote solidarity and make all of us more aware of our
In keeping with its long history of support for Special Olympics, local
K of C councils donated more than $3.5 million to Special Olympics in
2013. Members also provided more than 250,000 hours of service at nearly
20,000 Special Olympics events. K of C councils also donated an
additional $13.5 million to a number of other projects assisting people
with intellectual disabilities.
In addition, the Knights of Columbus helped more than two dozen Special
Olympics athletes take part in a "Football Clinic" arranged for them
with the help of the Indianapolis Colts organization at one of the
Colts' training facilities during the NFL's annual Scouting Combine in
Founded by the Venerable Father Michael J. McGivney in 1882, the Knights
of Columbus is the world's largest Catholic fraternal organization, with
more than 1.8 million members worldwide. Last year, Knights set new
records for giving, with more than $170 million and 70 million hours of
service donated to charitable causes.
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