Power Soccer Competes During Orlando Magic’s Halftime Show at Amway Center
ADA, Mich., Dec. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — On Wednesday, December 12, 2012 two four-on-four teams will perform a demonstration of power wheelchair soccer during the Orlando Magic’s halftime show at the Amway Center. Power Soccer is the largest organized sport for athletes in power wheelchairs. For Amway Independent Business Owners, Jim and Nancy Dornan, building awareness of this sport and enabling more wheelchair-bound athletes to participate, has been a matter of passion and heart. The sport provides an outlet and network of supportive relationships for special needs children, adults and their families.
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“No matter what personality, when you put them in that chair the very first time, there’s like a light bulb that goes on,” says Nancy Dornan. “They realize, ‘I’m doing something that other kids do.’ It doesn’t matter that they can’t use their hands to turn a page in a book or they can’t get up out of their chair. All of the sudden it doesn’t matter. It’s what’s in their head and their heart.”
A Personal Passion
Jim and Nancy, Amway Founders Crown Ambassadors from Atlanta, Georgia have poured their hearts into Power Soccer over the past 20 years. The sport helped them provide new opportunities for their son Eric, who was born with spina bifida. The Dornans have helped grow the sport from a handful of teams to more than 60, while building a structured competitive system that is standardized across multiple countries. The story of their involvement begins in the 1970s, and on the other side of the country.
Jim was working as an aeronautical engineer and Nancy was a speech pathologist, but neither was enamored with their jobs. They had heard Rich DeVos speak about the Amway business and had been begun investing time and energy in building their own Amway independent business.
When their first child, Eric, was born with spina bifida, the multiple surgeries he needed quickly maxed out their health insurance and their debt grew to more than $200,000. Rather than succumb to despair, Jim and Nancy drew on their faith and determination to overcome these challenges, and to give Eric the support he needed. They declared that failure was not an option, and began working on building their Amway business with renewed energy and focus.
Network of Caring
In time, their efforts paid off. Nine years from the start of their business, Jim and Nancy reached the Crown Ambassador achievement level, a significant success in the Amway world. Now at Founders Crown Ambassador level – the highest achievement in Amway — the Dornans’ business spans 36 countries and has enabled them to pursue their passion for helping others. They created the Network of Caring, a charitable organization that helps channel the passions of the Dornans and others to help people in need around the world.
“This is a family that is hugely impressive,” says Sandy Spielmaker, Vice President of Sales for Amway in the United States. “They made a commitment early on, and as they’ve done well in the business, it’s allowed them to do good in different communities in which they work.”
Network of Caring supporters sponsor approximately 5,000 children each year through World Vision, a humanitarian organization dedicated to helping children, families, and communities. Network of Caring has also built schools and orphan care centers in India, South Africa and Thailand. They have delivered more than 2,500 wheelchairs through Free Wheelchair Mission in half a dozen countries, and provide disaster relief assistance after major catastrophes.
Among all of the causes that the Dornans support, it’s evident that helping people with special needs holds a special place in their hearts, and their greatest joy is Power Soccer.
“It (soccer) gives you a reason to want to get up and do things in the morning,” says Eric Dornan, son of Jim and Nancy. “It’s great to see a lot of friends around your area and get together with them once or twice a week and just have a lot of fun together. We’re blessed to have a lot of people to help and give better lives to those who are less fortunate.”
The Dornans recently inspired Amway to get involved in supporting Power Soccer, with matching donations that will expand the number of teams and players that have access to Power Soccer, including clinics and camps that help ease new players into the sport, and equipment that puts the investment within reach of struggling families.
“We’re proud and glad to be part of Amway’s vision for One by One, because that’s what we do, too,” says Jim. “All around the world, IBOs find needs and inspire us to become involved. We think that helping people learn how to be givers and not just achievers is important to ultimately having the real joy of success. Our energy comes from the things we can leverage through our organization and through this amazing business.”
On December 12, Jim and Nancy Dornan hope to see a cheering crowd encourage the Power Soccer players during the Orlando Magic’s halftime show at the Amway Center. The game starts at 7 p.m. and will be aired on local Florida state television.
Amway (amway.com) is one of the world’s largest direct selling businesses. Alticor Inc., parent company of Amway, reported global sales of $10.9 billion in 2011. Founded in 1959 by entrepreneurs Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel, and based in Ada, Michigan (United States), Amway offers consumer products and business opportunities through a network of more than 3 million distributors in more than 80 countries and territories worldwide. The AMWAY ONE BY ONE CAMPAIGN FOR CHILDREN program (http://www.amway.com/about-amway/citizenship) builds local relationships that result in global impact. For more information about Amway, visit the Amway Newsroom at news.amway.com.