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Special Olympics Virginia (SOVA) creates opportunities for people with physical and intellectual disabilities to participate in sports training and athletic competition. Through its annual events, athletes get the chance to discover new strengths and demonstrate their abilities for their peers. SOVA was incorporated in 1975 and held its first summer games at Virginia Tech. Today, it runs state championships in 13 Olympic-style sports including basketball and power lifiting, with more than 10,000 athletes participating every year. The games also invite people without disabilities to serve as volunteers or audience members to foster a sense of common understanding, self-discovery, and community. To ensure accessibility for everyone, Special Olympics Virginia never charges the athletes or their families for participation.
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