Fort Myers Beach Kiwanis held its first meeting of the year last month at Bonita Bills. The guest speaker was Todd Dusenberry, who’s an ESE teacher at Cypress Lake High School Center for the Arts. He’s also the coach of the softball and bowling teams. Todd spoke to Kiwanis about Unified Sports which promotes social inclusion by bringing people with or without intellectual disabilities together on sports teams.
At the Kiwanis meeting Todd was accompanied by two of his students, Courtney and Peyton. The young men spoke of their involvement with both Unified Sports and Special Olympics. Kiwanis presented a check to help defray expenses for the event
Nineteen years ago, Todd was approached by a student suggesting they put together some kind of event promoting inclusion in sports for his students. That original field day included 45 athletes from 3 high schools. Today, Cypress Lake High School Center for the Arts hosts an annual Special Olympics where 1,800 athletes from 15 high schools and 2 middle schools participate. Each Special Olympian is partnered with a buddy for the morning.
This year the Special Olympics will be held Friday, December 8 on the football field at Cypress.