COLUMBIA — Beautiful, machine-woven area rugs incorporating the Special Olympics logo are part of a new pilot program benefiting Special Olympics South Carolina and Georgia. A large majority of each purchase benefits athletes in S.C., where the idea originated, and Georgia, home of flooring manufacturer Shaw Industries. If 200 or more rugs are sold by Aug. 31, 2012, the program could launch as a national fundraiser for Special Olympics North America.
The idea was conceived by flooring professional Paul Prince of Columbia, S.C., owner of Door to Door Floors, a commercial and residential flooring company established in 1999. He and his wife Angie have been active supporters of Special Olympics for many years, but Paul wanted to do something more.
“Contrary to popular belief, Special Olympics (SO) is so much more than just summer and winter games,” said Prince. “As I began to volunteer my time, I learned that thousands of individuals work all year long to provide valuable services to athletes and their families. I wanted to come up with something that would multiply many times over what I’d be able to contribute as just one person. Drawing on my experience in the flooring industry, I approached SO offices and Shaw Industries. After two years of negotiation, Rugs for a Reason was born.”
The urgent sales deadline — at least 200 rugs must be sold by August 31 to justify a national launch — is being shared online at www.RugsForAReason.com, via Facebook and Twitter (@Rugs4AReason), via email from state offices to SO fans and supporters, and through print and broadcast media appearances. All parties involved are claiming the Special Olympics motto in this effort: “Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”