Join Team 2018 and be a part of the USA Games experience.

During the first week of July in 2018, Special Olympics athletes from across the nation will descend on Seattle to compete in the USA Games. These fierce and courageous competitors will demonstrate the power of the human spirit and use sport to showcase the limitless talents of people with intellectual disabilities. They will inspire the city and the country to embrace the ideals of diversity, acceptance and inclusion, creating more unified communities.

The 2018 Special Olympics USA Games is creating a powerful team of 10,000 volunteers to provide their time and talents to produce the Games and help amplify the Special Olympics message of diversity, unity and inclusion.

Our volunteer team consists of four divisions:

  • Special Events
  • Support Services
  •  Sports
  • Fans in the Stands

Support Services

Spectator Services: Be a friendly face to provide information to families, athletes, Honored Guests and spectators.

Delegation Services: Work with each state program to answer questions about housing, transportation, meals, special events and provide support for any additional needs.

Awards Team: Make the athlete’s successes even sweeter by guiding them through medal ceremonies that showcase their efforts in competitions throughout the Games.

Media Team: Greet the media and credentialed photographers and support our social media teams at each of the venues. Connect the media with official Games spokespeople and guide them to reserved media areas at the event site.

IT Team: Provide desktop support at each venue, troubleshoot network issues and manage a fleet of Windows 10 PCs, copiers and printers.

Volunteers: Check in volunteers at each venue, answer questions, conduct orientation sessions, recruit, communicate via email and distribute volunteer uniforms.

Emergency Management Team/Security Teams: Document incident action plans, perform risk management tasks and coordinate with law enforcement, private security teams, medical and other agencies.

Medical Teams: Each venue requires trained medical teams to support public medical stations and provide assistance to athletes on the field of play.

Logistics/Warehouse: Get your hands dirty while managing the movement of gear, directing recycling/trash at each venue, tracking what needs to be replenished at each venue and working closely with the transportation team to get it there on time.

Transportation: Manage a rental car fleet, bus transportation and movement of freight to each venue. This team will need friendly people to communicate transportation needs at each venue and provide drivers to transport VIPs in rental SUVs and vans.

Special Events

Law Enforcement Torch Run: June 28 – July 1 Participate in the production of ceremonies for a Torch Run across the State of Washington leading up to the Games.

Welcome Day: June 28 Welcome the athletes as they arrive at SeaTac Airport and the University of Washington and make a spectacular first impression on the athletes when they arrive into Seattle.

Opening Ceremonies: July 1 Enhance the Opening Ceremonies experience by providing directional guidance in the Parade of Athletes and assisting with the seating of delegates, VIPs and families.

Special Olympics Town: July 1 - 6 Operate activity stations in Special Olympics Town, an area designated for athletes, coaches and other members of their delegation to relax and take a break from competition.

Fan Zone: July 1-6 Operate activity stations, assist sponsor exhibitors and performers at the mainstage in the Fan Zone, an entertainment area around Opening Ceremonies and competitions for athletes and spectators.

Healthy Athletes/Healthy Communities: July 1-6 Volunteer health professionals provide free, critical health screenings and educational sessions for athletes. Consultation and clinics on training, fitness and nutrition for peak athlete performance. In addition to volunteer health professionals, volunteers are needed to assist as greeters, registration assistants and guides.

Young Athletes: July 2-5 Staff activities, register families and answer questions at a celebration of sports, activities and inclusion for the next generation of athletes, ages 2 to 7. 

Unified Sports Experience: July 2-5 Maintain the field of play and register participants as the greater Seattle community is invited to break down barriers, promote inclusion and have fun by trying their hand at Special Olympics Unified Sports.

Independence Day: July 4 Manage games, activities, and entertainment stage while athletes and delegates celebrate the Fourth of July with an old-fashioned American BBQ and dance party.

Closing Ceremonies: July 6 Manage seating and refreshments for the athletes at the culmination and celebration of the 2018 USA Games.

Farewell Champions: July 7 Guide athletes and load/unload luggage from busses at the University of Washington and SeaTac Airport as we send the athletes home from the Games in style.


Sports Offered: Aquatics, Athletics, Basketball, Bocce, Bowling, Flag Football, Golf, Gymnastics, Powerlifting, Soccer, Softball, Standup Paddle Boarding, Tennis, and Volleyball

Each sport has a number of volunteer opportunities:

Competition Administration Team: Work directly in GMS to ensure athletes are registered correctly, results are posted and provide sports information to coaches, media and athletes. Provide information about competitions, schedules, venue changes, and coaches meetings.

Officials Support Team: Welcome the athletes to the 2018 USA Games and march alongside them in the Parade of Athletes with a state delegation.

Field of Play Team: Prepare the venue for competition, manage sports equipment and keep the venue clean. Depending on the sport, volunteers will shag balls, place soccer goals, or sweep the volleyball courts between matches. Volunteers will also manage the hydration stations for athletes in each venue.

Athlete Services Team: Monitor athlete-only areas, answer questions and provide support for athlete locker rooms.

Fans in the Stands

Bring your high-spirited group to cheer on the Special Olympics athletes at your favorite event.

Group Volunteer Opportunities

Please email our Volunteer Manager at for more information on volunteering as a group.

Leadership Roles

If you would like to be considered for a leadership role, please sign up on the volunteer website and indicate on the form your qualifications and what leadership roles you are interested in. The time commitment is typically 10 hours or less per week during the lead up to the games.