2015 Special Olympics August Tournament Volunteer Group Spotlight: HOBY

Volunteer Group Spotlight: HOBY

HOBY volunteers at August Tournament

Special Olympics MA (SOMA) is proud to have the dedicated volunteer support of MA HOBY (Massachusetts Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership), a nonprofit volunteer organization that promotes youth leadership development. Lead by their President, Gail Elmore, HOBY was represented by over 80 volunteers at this year's August Tournament, volunteering all day Saturday and Sunday at softball, cycling, bocce, and the Saturday night dance. HOBY was not only generous with their time, but showed great leadership, flexibility, and enthusiasm. Most importantly, they never tired of cheering, clapping, and offering high fives to all of our athletes who competed at August Tournament.

HOBY first volunteered at the 2004 August Tournament with 7 volunteers and have strengthened their partnership with SOMA ever since. Gail, the 2015 HOBY Volunteer of the Year, shares that August Tournament "is an opportunity for our volunteers to learn from the athletes. They are impressed by how the athletes are so positive, supportive of each other and appreciative and [HOBY] wants to bring these attitudes back to their school teams. Plus, we have built relationships with the athletes, volunteers and staff and we look forward to seeing everyone each year.This event is a favorite of our volunteers who always grow from the experience!"
Many of the HOBY volunteers have volunteered at SOMA for multiple years, including Julia who has been volunteering for 4 years. When asked what inspires her to volunteer each year, Julia says, "I love to keep seeing the athletes each year and seeing how they grow. There's such a camaraderie. It's great to see them supporting each other." For first time volunteer, Emma, she's already looking forward to returning next year. "I love it! I feel honored to be here!"

SOMA feels honored to be partnered with HOBY and to have a group of inspiring, dedicated volunteers support our athletes and our mission. THANK YOU, HOBY! We couldn't have the August Tournament without you!