After a year of waiting, it’s finally time to sign up to volunteer at the annual Chad Powell Memorial Special Olympics track meet. The meet will be held on Thursday, March 8 at the Keller High School Stadium.

If students would like to volunteer for the track meet, they may pick up an application form from Jared Swart in room M237, or from Karen Rumer in room N114. Applications are only available before and after school, as well as during passing periods – applicants may not leave or be late to class to pick up application forms.

“[Ms. Rumer and I] recruit student volunteers to be buddies for the athletes,” Swart explained. “They pair up and make sure the athletes get to their events, eat their lunch, get to and from their teams and most importantly, make sure the athletes have the best day possible.  They cheer for the athletes, give them high-fives and plenty of smiles and encouragement.”

In order to be eligible to volunteer, potential buddies must be passing all of their classes. It is also required that teachers and parents of the applicants sign off on the application. The deadline to turn in applications is Thursday, Feb. 8. If selected, volunteers will need to attend a mandatory one hour training before the meet to help answer any questions or concerns in regards to working at the event and with the athletes.

“The Keller ISD Special Olympics team is coached by Coach Boaz, Coach Newcombe, Coach Geasland and Coach Guess.  I used to coach in the past but now Mrs. Rumer and I recruit volunteers to assist with the track meet,” Swart said. “For the athletes, this is one of the most exciting days of the year.  This is a population of students that may never get a chance to play high school athletics, so this is the varsity meet that they look forward to all year.”

If a student has any questions about the application process or the track meet, see Swart in room M237 or Rumer in room N114. Special Olympic buddy lists are posted outside of M237 and N114.  Volunteers must attend one of the training meetings on Wednesday the Feb.21 , before school at 7:15 a.m. or after school at 4:00 p.m.  If they cannot make one of those meetings, they have the option to attend at Ridge, Central or Keller, but they must attend an informational meeting to be accepted.