“Napatunayan ko na kahit may kapansanan ako, marami akong kayang gawin,” says Marlon Tindoc, a Special Olympics Pilipinas powerlifting athlete.
Dreams, as they say, have no limit. They are not limited to an age bracket or gender, nor can they be stopped by disabilities. One proof of this is Marlon Tindoc, an athlete with intellectual disabilities and a Special Olympics Pilipinas powerlifting athlete. This is his story.
Power of a Dream
Marlon’s journey started when he was still at school, where he was first invited to join Special Olympics Pilipinas, an organization that advocates for individuals with intellectual disabilities by empowering them through sports. When Marlon joined the community, he started participating in a variety of activities that trained him physically and exposed him to different interests.
“Natuto akong tumakbo, mag-ping pong, mag-basketball, at maglaro ng soccer. Tapos nung huli, natuto ako mag-powerlifting.”
His newfound love for sports, specifically powerlifting, has opened up a world of possibilities and opportunities for Marlon. When asked to share about his perspective in life, he shares, “Wala namang trabaho para sa mga katulad namin, lalo na may edad na kami. Special Olympics lang ang buhay namin.”
Now 44 and one of the oldest athletes in Special Olympics, Marlon says that he has learned a lot ever since he joined the organization. “Sa sports, naging malakas ako dahil lagi akong nag-eehersisyo at kumakain ng gulay. Natuto din akong magtiwala sa sarili at mas lalong manalig sa Diyos.”
He adds: “Napatunayan ko na kahit may kapansanan ako, marami akong kayang gawin. Nakita ko na kaya kong maglaro gaya ng iba.”
Empowering Athletes with Intellectual Disabilities
Special Olympics Pilipinas uses sports as an avenue to inspire the same view Marlon has for athletes with intellectual disabilities. Through the power of volunteerism, we hold regular sports clinics and encourage our members to join world-level games to spark their confidence. Marlon, in particular, considers his participation in the last World Special Olympics games as a Special Olympics Pilipinas powerlifting athlete as one of the greatest highlights of his life so far.
“Napanood kami ng maraming tao at pinalakpakan kami. Nakakilala ako ng mga bagong kaibigan at kung papaano magka-disiplina. Natuto din akong maging leader at team captain. Sinigurado ko na okay ang buong team ko noon at ibinigay namin ang lahat sa aming mga laro.”
This opportunity only inspired Marlon to dream more. When asked about his goals in life, he showed a spirit and passion that goes beyond common misconceptions placed upon people of his age and status.
“Gusto kong makapag-trabaho at makatulong sa mga magulang ko. Gusto kong makapaglaro kahit matanda na ako at makapag-turo sa ibang mga athlete na katulad namin.”
Help Special Olympics Pilipinas Touch More Lives Like Marlon’s
Help us inspire more people like Marlon by joining our cause. You can apply as one of our volunteers or support our upcoming fundraising concert which will aid in our future activities. Some of the proceeds will also go to our participation in the upcoming World Special Olympics in Berlin in 2023. For more information about the concert, click on this link. You can also learn more about us by checking our page.