2023 Chicago Polar Plunge presented by Jackson   ○   Eileen In   ○   Join or create a Corporate Team

Katie Kelleher

March 5, 2023 8:00am - May 27, 2023 2:00pm

My Fundraising Page for Team Eileen In

#freezinforareason | #polarplunge | #makeasplash | #eileenin | #aidanwithkindness

Why I Plunge

On Sunday, March 5, 2023, I will be jumping into Lake Michigan to support the 7,500 athletes of Special Olympics Chicago! It’s cold enough, but I’m bold enough! #FreezinForAReason

I’m excited to join Team Eileen In for the fourth year in a row. My close friends Colleen and Scott Schaefers created Team Eileen In to honor their daughter, Eileen Schaefers, who has Down syndrome. Eileen is a beautiful, spunky 7-year-old girl whose lovely spirit brings a smile to everyone who meets her. Colleen and Scott love the mission of Special Olympics and hope that Eileen will participate one day.

When asked how they created the team name, Colleen said “The name came about after the popular phrase – lean in.  To lean in (to something) means to incline or press into something. You have to lean into the wind when you walk or you will be blown over. When you are faced with difficulties or challenges, you have to rise up and embrace them…lean in.  We thought this was a perfect name for our team and beautifully represents our dear girl.”

The Eileen In logo was created by Scott’s sister and niece. They made cookies for a family party honoring Eileen surviving her first year filled with three surgeries, countless doctor’s appointments, and lots of therapy sessions. The cookies were heart-shaped, with a smiley face and glasses. It is so simple, yet says so much: her three surgeries were the repairing of her heart at nine months old and two eye surgeries removing her cataracts at six and seven weeks old.

Special Olympics gives people with intellectual disabilities the opportunity to discover new strengths, abilities, and success. The money we raise goes directly to Special Olympics Chicago and its athletes.  

I have set a personal fundraising goal of $1,500 for this year's Polar Plunge, and I would truly appreciate your help to reach it. No amount is too small. For example, $25 will buy an athlete’s lunch and uniform. $50 can buy snowshoes or a softball bat. $250 will pay for a team’s bus transportation, and $500 will buy a flight to a competition.

In 2022, Team Eileen In raised $95,000 for Special Olympics Chicago - incredible! Please help me #MakeASplash again this year. 

Thank you for your generosity!





of your goal reached

My Supporters

  • Anonymous Fabulous Katie - delighted to support you and this cause, always! Hugs, Geri & Marvin March 2023
  • Chris Bojar Great work, Katie! March 2023
  • Christine Wiseman Way to go, Katie!! March 2023
  • Kery Kafka Way to go Katie March 2023
  • Jillian Pantano March 2023 $26.25
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  • Kelly Walsh This is awesome….good luck! March 2023 $210.00
  • Susan and James Kelleher Great work for such a worthy cause Katie K. Love, Mom and Dad February 2023 $105.00
  • Anthea Bojar Katie, I hope it ends up to be a warmer day. What a great cause...Tia February 2023 $105.00
  • Katie Kelleher February 2023 $105.00
  • Kathleen McShane Go Katie!!! February 2023 $100.00
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My Team