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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Amateur Sports, Recreation & Sports, Sports

Mission: Achilles International’s mission is to enable people with all types of disabilities to participate in mainstream athletics, with a focus on distance running.  Achilles promotes personal achievement, enhanced self-esteem, improved health and fitness, and lowers barriers between disparate types of people.

Results: Achilles hosts an annual Hope & Possibility 5 Mile Race where 5,000 able bodied and disabled people participate together. 200 Achilles athletes with all kinds of disabilities compete each year in the ING NYC Marathon.  Achilles also participates in the Marathon Tour, which features 14 mainstream races throughout the country.

Target demographics: people with disabilities of all ages from all walks of life; combat injured veterans from OEF and OIF, as well as veterans from prior wars such as Vietnam and Korea; non combat injured veterans with disabilities

Direct beneficiaries per year: 10,000

Geographic areas served: HQ in NYC chapters throughout the US and worldwide

Programs: The Achilles Freedom Team of Wounded Veterans helps service personnel injured in Iraq and Afghanistan or in earlier wars such as Vietnam to train, be active, compete and achieve. Achilles Kids is in 150 public and private schools; 2,000 children with disabilities run, walk or roll throughout the year with the goal of completing 26.2 miles. The Achilles Tri team develops multi-sport athletes.

Community Stories

22 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This nonprofit is the most incredible organization that positively changes the lives of volunteers and disabled athletes alike. This is the most incredible nonprofit organization with which I have ever been involved.

1 Cindy220

Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughter belongs to the Pikes Peek chapter. She has Cerebral Palsy and Cortical Vision Impairment. Her disabilities require her to have a guide runner. Achilles allows her to participate in an activity that she loves, running. My daughter has waited what seems like a lifetime to find a group that she belongs in. Winning races with a PC category has been an added bonus:) In the short time she's been attending Achilles, the group has become part of our family.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was introduced to Achilles in Houston Texas, a few years ago and I found a home.
The support and acceptance of all levels of disabilities is amazing. Achilles allows us to expand our abilities in sports and to discover that this applies to everyday life.
Anyone with any level of disability is welcomed...all is needed is a desire and willingness to try.
Achilles gives people a safe place to try and excel at something new.
I can't recommend these guys enough.

1 Greg75

Client Served

Rating: 5

I found Achilles International in 2010, and was added to the Achilles Freedom Team as an adaptive wounded veteran handcyclist. My first race was the Marine Corps Marathon. I was blown away by the atmosphere and love that was poured out of the Achilles staff members for each individual. They made the experience memorable with their family-style approach to event planning. On November 6, 2016, I will participate in the New York Marathon, making it my eighth marathon with Achilles. In addition to marathons, I execute fundraising campaigns to give back for all they've done for my family and I over the past six years. Achilles is family. Achilles is a movement that breaks down barriers and removes the 'dis' from disability.

Kathleen123

Client Served

Rating: 5

I cried the day I filled out my application to join. I was 50 years old and all of a sudden my vision made running unsafe. I was so nervous the first day I went but EVERYONE welcomed me and helped make me comfortable.
I went from not wanting to get out of bed in the mornings back to living! The other athletes have been helpful and supportive and taught me about accepting life with a disability. The volunteers - there is just no way to explain how their selflessness impacts me.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Achilles changed my husband'a life. He saw other disabled men, and it had a profound effect on his self esteem. He now hand cycles every Saturday!

4 Denise147

Client Served

Rating: 5

Achilles International has helped me run in over half of the World Major Marathons, including the New York City, Chicago and Boston Marathons. The best part of Achilles International is the friends from all over the world that I have met through it. I have left sided Cerebral Palsy and Achilles shows all people can exercise no matter what their physical or mental challenges are.

4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

When I first moved to the Upper West Side of Manhattan, I thought Achilles was a sport clothing company. On every walk I took in Central Park, with my dog, by myself, with my family, I'd pass countless runners, walkers, cyclists, of all ages, in groups or alone, wearing their logo tee-shirts. They all looked so happy, healthy and dedicated to outdoor pursuits that I suppose I can be forgiven for being surprised to learn that Achilles is a charity that assists the disabled.In an instant, my thinking was upended. Achilles changed my view of the disabled from people who are lacking something to people who are amazing and can overachieve right up there with the best of us. Love this group.

3 Lisa535

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband has been doing marathons with Achilles Freedom Team for two years and it has dramatically improved his outlook on life. Achilles is more like family than a non-profit. They always have race weekends organized and make us feel special. Janet and Joe are amazing and we look forward to many more races with Achilles!

3 LArocho1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I've been with Achilles since I was 6 years old - first as an Achilles Kid, then a member of their adult program, and just recently, I got the chance to intern with them over the summer. I've said it before and I will say it again: I love Achilles! Everyone at Achilles is so warm, welcoming and encouraging; they make you believe that you can do anything you set your mind to and that -the feeling that you CAN cross that finish line - is what makes you push yourself harder and achieve what you never thought possible. Thank you so much, Achilles!