In Sochi this year the U.S. walked away with 25 medals earned by some of our most inspiring athletes. Even though the Olympics are over, the legacy of these athletes continues to live on. With the help of Citi nine American, Olympic Athletes are teaming up to make a difference with the Every Step of the Way campaign. Each athlete is representing a community program and using their own incredible story to encourage the assistance of current and future generations of Olympic Athletes.
This post was created in partnership with Citi®. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Every Step of the Way Started during the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Every Step of the Way Program has been dedicated to supporting Olympic athletes, and now it has donated $500,000 to programs designed to advance future athletes and give them a chance to become Olympians. The various programs include U.S. Olympic, Paralympic, as well as community funds. This sponsorship will go to initiatives such as injury prevention, providing the chance for urban youths to participate in Olympic sports at little to no cost, and helping Olympians through difficult times. Their commitment is touching the lives of many and providing opportunities that would have been impossible otherwise.
Alana Nichols’ Story One extraordinary athlete partnering in this initiative is Alana Nichols. She was paralyzed in a snowboarding accident in 2000 and told she would never ski again. Somehow, Alana found the strength to continue living her dreams. At the University of Alabama she played wheelchair basketball and went on to win a gold medal with the USA team at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Then, Alana began Paralympic alpine skiing, but once again was faced with a challenge when her brother passed away. Alana did not have the time to stop and feel sorry for herself. She pushed on and made it to the Vancouver 2010 Paralympics and won yet another gold medal for the U.S. in alpine skiing. Alana became the first American woman to win a gold medal in the winter and summer games. Nothing has stopped Alana from achieving her goals and Citi has been there supporting her Paralympic dreams.
Paralympic Champions Fund Now, Alana is working with Citi to support the Team USA Paralympic Champions Fund so other athletes with disabilities can have the chance to live up to their potential. Without funding these athletes might never have the chance to even train not to mention compete in the Paralympics. Most people don’t realize the cost that goes into training and working toward the Olympics. For most it would never be a reality without the help of sponsors and programs like Every Step of the Way.
Kaitlin tries to live her life according to the words of Theodore Roosevelt, “Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, and difficulty.” As a marathon runner, aspiring writer, and lover of travel, she lives each day to find the next adventure to take her out of her comfort zone. She hopes to inspire and encourage others with her words.