Skip to content

Cathy Herard

I’m Embarking on a Campaign of Listening


This week I had a phone call with Procter and Gamble (P&G) and they gave me a brief overview of their Thank You Mom campaign as it relates to the Special Olympics this summer in Athens. P&G has made a significant donation of $250,000 to the Special Olympics to support it’s local programs and services.

As is their tradition P&G reached out to the Mothers of the Athletes to ask how they could best partner with them. This group of mothers simply wants to ensure that their children are able to compete. This group of moms would like nothing more than to see the games supported.

As a mom I was a little surprised by this so I decided to poke around the internet and see if any of these mothers had written anything.

I should have known that one of my most devoted members of my community would write a post so ordinary about a day so extraordinary that I’d be teary eyed and smiling reading it. Cathy is the mom of Cody, an athlete in the special olympics. She writes:

At some point while waiting for his third and final race of the day, the 1 kilometer walk, he looked at his Dad and said, I want to win. I get a little teary as I write that. It’s so much more than I can express in words. Cody has never cared about winning or being the best at anything, not because he doesn’t give a darn, but because he just wasn’t made that way. In most cases, that’s been a good thing, sometimes it’s a gift that autism gave us rather than taking something away.

I wasn’t sure how to introduce this campaign to y’all, so I thought I’d embark on a campaign of listening. My community is diverse, but we all share a special tenderness. I can’t be the only person who was reading at her computer and silently cheering for Cody to win the whole shebang.

The Olympics has united nations, wars have been paused so that men and women can compete. Just as we honor our Olympic athletes I’m getting excited about our Special Olympics Athletes. Oh, and their moms. You cannot ignore Mom when you look at an athlete of any age. I’m sorry but if I helped you learn to walk that means I helped you learn to run. [okay maybe a little selfish but that’s just me projecting]

Procter and Gamble  also went on a campaign of listening and to honor the Moms of the athletes competing in the upcoming Special Olympics World Summer Games another $250,000 will be donated to support Team USA’s travel to Athens, assuming y’all help. In order to get this next quarter of a million dollars we (you and I) are being asked to like the Thank You Mom campaign on facebook. Every time you like, share or leave a comment on the page another dollar is added to the gift.

This post is brought to you from my partnership with P&G.