As an organization, Special Olympics Manitoba has officially been around for 35 years. However, the seeds of the organization certainly pre-date the year 1980 which happens to be the year the organization was incorporated. Ex-NHL hockey player Ted Irvine brought the concept of Special Olympics to Manitoba in the 1970s. Picked up by the organizations first Executive Director, Dan Johnson the organization sent athletes to both the 1978 National Summer Games in Regina and the 1979 World Games in Brockport, New York.

From our modest beginnings that laid the organization’s foundation, we have grown to be part of a much larger global movement. Having said this, we have not lost sight of those early values and beliefs that our founders clearly laid out for us. We continue to be dedicated to promoting respect, acceptance, inclusion and human dignity for people with an intellectual disability through sport. Recognized as the Sport Governing Body for individuals with an intellectual disability, today we provide 18 sports to over 1800 athletes in all seven regions of the Province.


  1. Inclusion: We foster inclusive communities.
  2. Diversity: We honour what is unique in each individual.
  3. Empowerment: We create opportunities to pursue full potential.
  4. Respect: We operate in an environment of cooperation, collaboration and dignity.
  5. Excellence: We elevate standards and performance.