Chris Pratt and Katherine Schwarzenegger have been announced as the newest members of the Special Olympics’ Global Ambassador program, making them the first couple ambassador duo! In their new roles, the Guardians of the Galaxy actor and The Gift of Forgiveness author will be focusing on Special Olympics Unified Sports and Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools programming.
John F. Kennedy’s sister Eunice Kennedy Shriver, who is Katherine’s maternal grandmother, founded the Special Olympics back in 1968. “Special Olympics has always been a huge part of my life,” Katherine said in a press release. “My grandmother dedicated her entire existence to being an advocate for those with special needs and my childhood consisted of going to SOI events and my cousins and I being camp counselors at Camp Shriver.”
She continued, “Chris and I are so thrilled to be a part of the SO family as a couple and to continue to spread the mission of SO and advocate whenever and wherever we can about inclusion, dignity and acceptance. This is a movement that speaks to our hearts as parents and individually.”
Chris admitted that he is “humbled by the chance to serve as an ambassador for Special Olympics.” He said, “I’m continually amazed by the bravery and spirit of these wonderful athletes. I stand by Special Olympics on their quest make the world a better, healthier and more joyful place—one athlete, one volunteer, one family member at a time.” Chris and Katherine, who wed in 2019, are also collaborating with Marvel Studios to hire a Special Olympics athlete for a production assistant position.
Mary Davis, CEO of Special Olympics, noted that SO athletes admire the couple “because they are relatable, genuine, and inspiring.” Mary added, “They have demonstrated unwavering dedication throughout their careers to lifting people up. They are incredibly influential as individuals and together they will invigorate our movement. We are proud to have Katherine and Chris join the inclusion revolution.”
Years before Katherine’s grandmother founded the Special Olympics, Eunice, who passed away in 2009, started a summer camp for children with intellectual disabilities in her backyard. Per the Special Olympics’ website, “The goal was to learn what these children could do in sports and other activities—and not dwell on what they could not do.” Eunice’s “vision and drive for justice grew into the Special Olympics movement.”