The Progress Outreach Program took a trip out to the Dyersville Sportsman’s Club to fish with members of the club, June 8.

Headed by Lois Olberding, a Special Olympics coach, the Progress Outreach Program provides adults with intellectual or physical disabilities an opportunity to participate in social, physical or other recreational activities. The program’s main goal is to promote and encourage inclusion, involvement, acceptance and respect for everyone. There are 30 members in the program whose ages range from 22 to 58.

The fishing trip was one of the many different activities that the program has for its members. Others include throwing holiday parties, going out to eat, playing different sports. Since Olberding started the program five years ago, members of the group have gotten a chance to interact with the community in ways they might not have before.

“We really want to promote inclusion among all members of the community,” Olberding said, a challenge not easy to overcome in some communities. Although it was a struggle to do much during the pandemic, the program has developed good relationships with other groups and organizations in the community such as the Rolling Knolls Golf Course, the Knights of Columbus, and Western Dubuque and Beckman high schools.

Olberding sang the highest praises for these groups, especially the Dyersville Sportsman’s Club, who has invited them out for a cookout and fishing on numerous occasions. With these relationships growing, Olberding hopes the Progress Outreach Program can connect with more groups and members of the community, saying, “Anyone and everyone is welcome to get involved, we don’t turn anyone away.”

Olberding invites anyone interested in getting involved in any way to contact her at (563) 590-4791.