What is your first and last name?
- Brittany Ayers
What is your current age?
Did you attend college? If so, where?
- Yes I graduated from Grand Canyon University in April of 2018
What do you do for a living?
- Right now I am a full-time student getting my Masters in Special Education.
What is a fun fact about you?
- Fun fact about me is I love taking barre classes for exercise.
What got you involved in Special Olympics? When was this?
- I got involved in Special Olympics when I was a junior in high school. I played Unified Basketball and ran in Unified Track.
What keeps you involved in Special Olympics? Is there a person or a reason?
- I stay involved in Special Olympics because I love the community and support that comes from all the athletes and coaches.
What activities do you do with Special Olympics? Play sports? Youth leader? Intern?
- I coach Special Olympics sports, softball, soccer, and basketball!
What does it mean to coach a Unified Sports team?
- Coaching a Unified Sports team to me is all about encouraging equal opportunities for everyone to play sports.
What does Unified mean to you?
- Unified to me means all individuals from different background and different abilities having the opportunity to come together and work for a common goal and achieve things that at one point maybe didn’t seem possible.
What is one thing you want people to know about persons with disabilities?
- One thing I want people to know is, it’s not about ability or disability, its about treating every single person you come across with kindness and acceptance.
What is a typical Unified Sports practice like for you?
- Unified Sports practices are crazy…FUN! It’s always a time where all the athletes come and work on skills and teamwork and grow the love of each sport.
What is a goal you have for yourself that you want to accomplish in the next year?
- A goal I have for myself that I wish to accomplish in the next year is to graduate with my masters and begin teaching in a classroom.
Who is the most influential person to you?
- This is a tough question, I look up to many people. However, I would say that I love Ellen Degeneres and how she is continually trying to do good in the world and show everyone love and acceptance.
What’s your favorite sport?
- My favorite sport would have to be baseball, but I love all sports.
Share a brief story of a really special moment you had with a Special Olympics athlete.
- There have been many moments over the years that have brought me tears of joy. Being involved with Special Olympics has given me the opportunity to meet so many amazing individuals. One of my favorite memories was a couple of years ago at a state softball competition, my team and I were waiting for our next game to start and someone from an opposing team came up and begin telling me how much they enjoyed playing our team from Chandler and that he looks forward to seeing all of our players. This moment was one I will never forget. This is why we play Special Olympics sports, to support all teams and all players and to genuinely enjoy the love of the game.
In your opinion, why does inclusion matter?
- It doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, or what you can or cannot do. Everyone deserves to be shown kindness and to feel the love and acceptance that comes with inclusion. Inclusion is important because it is breaking down the mold and exception of perfection. When everyone is included then everyone wins. Inclusion is acceptance, inclusion is kindness, inclusion is necessary.