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Being a part of it: People with intellectual disabilities as volunteers in the Youth Olympic Games

Being a part of it: People with intellectual disabilities as volunteers in the Youth Olympic Games

Publication type

Journal Articles

Publisher

Journal of Sport for Development

Year

2019

This article is a case study into the personal and social experiences and outcomes of a group of young people with intellectual disabilities volunteering at the Youth Olympic Games in Norway.

During the Youth Olympic Winter Games event in Lillehammer, Norway, a group of students with intellectual disabilities worked as volunteers. The teachers of the class functioned in a social entrepreneurial manner, using the event to create social value for this particular group. Qualitative interviews were conducted with the group of students (n=12), and observations were made during the event. The students’ teachers (n=3) and the head of volunteers (n=1) from the organizing committee were also interviewed for triangulation, thus verifying the interpretation of the data. This study demonstrated that social value was created through the practical tasks the students with intellectual disabilities were given, especially in relation to the Olympic context of the event, and the job itself was more important than those for whom they were doing it or why. Other important sources of social value were for the students to be outside of the classroom and to be cooperating and learning from each other within the group. Last, the students had the opportunity to aid and assist, instead of being aided and assisted, and to give something back to the local community.

About

Author

Roald Undlien

Published

Wednesday, April 24, 2019 - 11:30