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  • Writer's pictureThe Hambrick Foundation

Annual Unified Sports Day will bring students together with help from THF grant funds

Updated: Mar 15

Students from across Central Illinois will meet at Farmington Central High School this fall for a day of unified sports events and fun. The Hambrick Foundation is proud to support these efforts, the goal of which is promote inclusion.

Annual unified sports day will be held this fall at Farmington Central High School

The annual Unified Sports Day will be hosted at the school in collaboration with staff from the Special Education Association of Peoria County (SEAPCO). Kasey Miller, Adapted Physical Education Teacher/Consultant at SEAPCO, submitted an application to THF requesting funds to help expand the event.

"This inclusive event will bring students with and without disabilities from across Central Illinois’s 18 different school districts together for a day of activities that encourage social skills, physical activity, sportsmanship, collaboration, teamwork, and fun," Miller wrote. "The purpose of this event is to bring together this special population of students into one place where they can interact, socialize and build relationships with their typical peers. Due to the volume of students attending, we need to provide a more accommodating sensory area and plan to use the funds specifically for that part of the event."

Grant funds will provide materials for the event including pop-up tents, immersive sand/water/shaving cream tables, swing chairs, bean bag chairs, noise canceling headphones and other sensory items.

The first event, held in 2023 at Farmington High School attracted more than 300 students. Miller said the event was a success and plans on expanding this year, inviting more schools and having a more accommodating sensory area to meet the individual needs of everybody participating.

"Unified Sports Day is a unique opportunity for students with and without disabilities to come together to compete on a level playing field, build skills, socialize, build relationships, and have fun," Miller said. "The event committee includes and utilizes SEAPCO Behavior Consultants and Staff volunteers that are experienced in managing behaviors and sensory integration."

The date of the upcoming event has not been finalized, by Miller said they are looking at late September, or early October.

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