Andrew Sill, a 16-year-old student from Ferndown Upper School, has spent his summer holiday working in a new role as ambassador at his local leisure centre to promote disability sports.
“I am aware through struggling to find local disability sports how difficult this is,” says Andrew who has cerebral palsy. “My aim is to make it easier for the disabled to get the information by creating a communication network to signpost these sporting activities and how to access them.”
He will be doing this at the Ferndown Leisure Centre, which is a hub site catering for people with disabilities in East Dorset. The centre aims to provide disability activities to get more disabled people involved in sports and leisure.
Andrew adds, “I currently use the gym twice a week, and play cricket at the leisure centre. I find the sessions very beneficial as they have helped me to improve my balance. Cerebral palsy restricts me from doing day-to-day things, so imagine my delight when I found I could take part in fitness training in the gym amongst able bodied people.
“Rob the fitness manager and his team are my personal training instructors, they provide me with programmes to follow, and due to their assistance I can use the more complicated machines, for example, the treadmill and the rower.”
Rob said, “We would like to build a personal relationship with disabled people in the community and to find out more about what they want from their leisure centre. Our job is to provide a valuable community service and understanding the needs of disabled residents is absolutely core to this.”
To find out more about the activities and facilities at Ferndown Leisure Centre, or to enquire about your sporting interests, please contact Andrew Sill on 01202 877468 or visit www.ferndownleisurecentre.co.uk