Important resources to help you navigate the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in Wisconsin
Hub for reliable, timely news about COVID-19 pandemic

‘Really heartwarming:’ Pennsylvania special needs cheer team making strides

World Cup Jupiter Cheer Team competed in their very first regional competition in York County, PA. Parents say the special needs cheerleading team is changing the way people with differences are accepted.

YORK COUNTY, Pa. (WPMT) — On Saturday, ‘World Cup Jupiter Cheer Team’ competed in their very first regional competition in York County.

The team organizer and coach, Dave Haldman says it’s his mission to include everyone and send a message of acceptance.

“It gives these kids two minutes and some odd seconds out on the mat where they can feel normal,” said Haldman.

Parents of those on the team say Haldman’s program is changing their children’s lives.

“It’s really heartwarming to see people who don’t know my son stand for him and cheer for him,” said Shannon Antes.

Antes says the program has made a world of a difference for her son who is nine.

“We’ve done so many other sports and he finally found something that he’s good at and he can be himself because all the other kids are just like him,” said Antes.

“It’s so much fun dancing around with your friends and competing with your friends,” said Antes son Alex, who is on the team.

“To see them come out and be able to do all of this that’s what makes me happy that’s what it’s all about,” said Haldeman. “I just can’t put it into words they are the best,” he added.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.