#GenerationG – Acceptance For All

#Generation G is a worldwide movement that goes beyond Down syndrome to send a global message of acceptance for ALL.  UW – Madison and Badgers Give Back is a part of this worldwide movement.  

Badgers Give Back is a UW-Madison organization that focuses on creating community relationships with Badger student-athletes, staff, and community organizations. Our Program and Volunteer manager, Courtney, reached out to the UW Athletic department and invited Caitlin Quillen and Quinton Smith from Badgers Give Back to the Playhouse for a tour and meet and greet to share some ideas for future partnership opportunities. One of these partnership opportunities involved Caitlin inviting GiGi’s Playhouse participants and their families to a recent UW Men’s Basketball Game vs Robert Morris College.

During the game, members from Middleton Area Special Olympics and Badgers for Special Olympics competed on center court during half time.  At first, the crowd was silent, not knowing what to expect.  As the game went on, players started making baskets, running the ball up and down the court and playing great defense.  Slowing, the crowd started getting louder until entire stadium was clapping and cheering the players on.  The announcers narrated the game like it was the NBA, setting up the last 10 seconds of the game like it was a nailbitter – hoping for one last shot.  In the end, the basket wasn’t made but the crowd was on their feet. After the game, one of the participants was interviewed on the jumbotron.  He shared that his big dream as a kid was to play in the Kohl Center.  That dream was acheived today.  Acceptance for ALL!

Alison, Auggie and Ben were all there to experience this amazing half time game.  From the moment they walked into the Kohl Center to walking into the stadium, there was excitement in the air.  They all sat next to each other, watching the game intently from their 4th row seats.  They stood up to cheer on their peers during the halftime show and loved participating in the stadium wave.  Alison caught one of the t-shirts the cheerleaders threw into the crowd.  Auggie loved dancing to the music during timeouts with Anne, our Operations and 1:1 coordinator.  And Ben had one of his big dreams come true – being on TV!  Little did we know that GiGi’s Playhouse would be featured on the jumbotron along with our 3 playhouse participants.  They were ecstatic to see their faces up on the big TV!  Acceptance for ALL!

Thank you UW Athletics, Badger Gives Back, Middleton Area Special Olympics and Badgers for Special Olympics for making this a truly memorable night for Alison, Auggie, Ben and their families!

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