March 26, 2015

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Jeannie Dallahi has always known that her daughter Amina was destined to be a gymnast.  From as early as she can remember Amina was doing somersaults in their home.  By age two, Amina, born with Downs syndrome, was taking a gymnastics class. For the next two years, Amina trained at the Gym Ken in Windham.  At age four, Amina was diagnosed with Leukemia and for the next two years her days were filled with chemotherapy, doctors visits and physical therapy. Jeannie explained, holding back tears, "once my daughter was doing gymnastics again, I would know that I had my Amina back."  And by age six, Amina was back in the gym!


When Amina was eligible for participation in Special Olympics at age eight, she began competing at events with Special Olympics Massachusetts.  Today, two years later, Amina still loves to compete and with the help of her coach, Carrie O' Shea, she has moved up to a more complex competition level and in 2014 won three gold medals (bars, floor and vault), one silver medal (all around) and one bronze medal (balance beam).  Amina is excited to participate this year where she will attend assessments in Sterling, MA followed by the Special Olympics Massachusetts State Summer Games in June. 


When she is not doing gymnastics, Amina enjoys dancing, swimming, Barbies and singing in her school chorus.  




Amazon is doing its part to give back! AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support Special Olympics New Hampshire every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at, you'll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. 


On your first visit to AmazonSmile, you need to select Special Olympics New Hampshire to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. Amazon will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make at will result in a donation. 



By: Garison Rogacki, Unified Basketball Coach at John Stark Regional High School

I am a new coach to Unified Sports and have been very impressed with it. I coach the NHIAA Unified Basketball team at John Stark Regional High School. It has been a great experience working with the athletes and partners and watching them improve and grow as a team.


The athletes and partners put a ton of effort into the unified basketball team. As a team we practice together during school for 40 minutes once a week. During that time, we have really focused on teamwork, skill development, and conditioning. The athletes and partners put all they can into every drill and activity. This effort shows on the court with the improvement of their performance during games. We have spent a lot of time on passing and looking for our teammates and it is really impressive to see the players stop, look for a teammate and make a great pass to them. I could not ask for more effort or energy out of the athletes and partners at John Stark Regional High School.


Unified Sports are great for the school's community. The support from students and parents is awesome. We recently had our Fans in the Stands Day at school and it was an exciting experience for our team. The athletes and partners were able to show their peers, parents and teachers what they have been working on and the basketball skills that they have. The school band was set up in the gym which added to the amount of energy and excitement around the team.


With the camaraderie that the team builds, the support the team receives and the success the team achieves Unified Basketball has been a tremendous experience for everyone involved. Unified Sports is a true asset to the schools that embrace it. It is a great opportunity for students to come together and work for a common goal. 




Thank you to the 174 Dippers that braved icy Lake Winnipeasukee on March 14th and 15th!


Click here to see a video from the day: 


Winni Dip Award Winners

  • Grizzly Bear: Doug Moorhead from Team Woodstock raised $3,400
  • Grizzly Band of Bears: 17 Dippers from Nashua Police Department raised an average of $716.35 each
  • Brown Bear: Doug Moorhead from Team Woodstock raised $3,400
  • Brown Band of Bears: 38 Dippers from Hillsborough County raised $25,699!

HS Dip Award Winners

  • Grizzly Bear Cub: Macgregor Gay from Manchester West High School raised $1,625
  • Grizzly Band of Bear Cubs: 8 Dippers from Manchester West High School raised $441.88






The State Basketball Tournament is right around the corner and we need your help!  Please check out website next week to see a list of all open jobs and to sign up.


The Tournament will take place on Friday April 10th and Saturday April 11th at various locations in Derry and Londonderry.


For more information, please contact Sue Asselin Hawthorne at (603) 624-1250.




Special Olympics athletes, leaders, and family members from thirty-nine states converged on Capitol Hill on March 18 for Special Olympics' 12th annual "Capitol Hill Day."  Throughout the day, Special Olympics athletes held more than two hundred and fifty face-to-face meetings with their Congressional representatives to advocate for continued federal support for critical health and education services provided by Special Olympics that transcend the playing field and transform classrooms, communities, and lives.


Special Olympics self-advocates educated lawmakers and their staffs about the significant consequences that arise from the stigma and stereotypes that people with intellectual and developmental disabilities face and how that impacts their lives in the areas of healthcare, education and more. They were able to effectively convey the high-impact and cost-effectiveness of Special Olympics' programming that addresses these issues, securing support from numerous bi-partisan legislators.


Special Olympics CEO Janet Froetscher accompanied delegations throughout the day: "This year's Hill Day focused on two key areas, beyond our core mission of sport, in which Special Olympics serves as a powerful catalyst for change: improving the levels of access to and quality of healthcare that people with intellectual disabilities receive, and improving school climates so that children with intellectual disabilities or other differences are not targets of isolation or abuse, and creating an environment in which all children can learn and thrive - socially, emotionally, athletically, and academically. Ours is an urgent mission."




March 29
Prep School Plunge
April 10 - 11
Derry & Londonderry
April 19
Greater Manchester Area Swim Meet
May 9
Lower Merr Area Summer Games
May 9
Upper Valley Area Summer Games
May 16
Monadnock Area Summer Games
May 17
Great North Woods Area Sum Games
May 17
Seacoast Area Summer Games



Special Olympics New Hampshire is grateful for the annual support of our Mission Partners who help bring our programs to life.