Over the past few months nearly 1,000 individuals with intellectual disabilities between the ages of 2 and 7 have participated in Special Olympics Massachusetts’ Young Athletes™ events throughout the state. If you’re not familiar with the Young Athletes program, it’s a developmentally appropriate play program for children with intellectual disabilities that is designed to foster physical, cognitive and social development. We love being able to introduce the importance of sports programming to this younger age group and allow them one of their first opportunities to participate in physical activity and couldn’t do it without community partners who feel the same way. This year we have been extremely proud to partner with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts to bring Young Athletes to life. “We are pleased to be part of the Young Athletes program,” said Jeff Bellows, Vice President of Corporate Citizenship, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts. “Helping young people learn the importance of being active and the value of a healthy lifestyle is critical to creating a more vibrant community for everyone. That is why we are proud to partner with Special Olympics to support this important programming across the commonwealth.” The growth of the Special Olympics Massachusetts Young Athletes program over the last few years has been tremendous and we can’t wait to watch the impact it continues to make throughout the community as we move forward.