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Posted On: 5th Nov 2013

Disability Sport Fix on ITV News

Fixer Amy Hutchinson playing boccia
Young people partaking in wheelchair sports
Tom Webster, English Federation of Disability Sport

A disabled games enthusiast from Cheshire is promoting para-sports, with the hope of getting both disabled and non-disabled people taking part together.

 

Her story was shown on ITV Granada Reports on Friday 8th November.

 

Middlewich Fixer Amy Hutchinson was born with spina bifida, and is paralysed from the waist down and wheelchair dependent.

 

She credits her PE teacher at school for getting her into sport and says being involved in a team has given her a sense of belonging.

 

‘My PE teacher, Mrs Simms, was brilliant. She basically said, “Well, everybody else is doing sport so you will too.”

 

‘She got me doing boccia, which is basically bowls but for disabled people, and I’m actually a regional champion now.

 

‘People accept you and want you to be part of something which you love. And I love sport - so to feel accepted into that is amazing.’

 

The 16-year-old believes there is a lack of sports clubs available for disabled youth in her community and hopes her campaign will get individuals of all abilities trying disability sports.

 

‘With Fixers, I’m going to be doing a film which will encourage people to go and hopefully educate others on what is out there. Sort of saying, “Don’t be afraid to ask.”’

 

Also appearing in the broadcast story and showing his support for Amy’s Fix is Tom Webster from the English Federation of Disability Sport.

 

‘Roughly twenty per cent of disabled people take part in sport once a week. That’s compared to around forty per cent of non-disabled people,’ explains Tom.

 

'There’s a real wide range of reasons - perceptions, physical barriers and confidence in a lot of cases.’

 

Using her own passion to inspire others to get active, Amy adds: ‘It’s about being determined and about being confident. I think that is a massive thing; increasing people’s confidence so they’re not just going to be shot down with their ideas.’

Author: N. Farooq & N. Shahvarani

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