With just 42 days to go until the start of the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, Disability Sport Wales – the National Governing Body for disability sport in Wales – has highlighted the vital work of Welsh sports clubs, who have contributed to transforming lives through the power of sport.
Charity-run Rebounders Trampoline Club has this week (26th July) been awarded Wales’ very first insport Gold Standard, recognising its unparalleled efforts to ensure children and adults of all abilities are offered access to an inclusive physical activity.
Since launching in 2002, the club has specialised in helping children and adults with disabilities access the benefits of trampolining, growing from just six members to over 200 and helping to improve disability provision across South Wales.
The club, who offer a seven-days-a-week provision from its Ocean Park facility in Cardiff, has since furthered its reach in 2016, providing accessible disability sessions across Rhondda Cynon Taf; launching classes at Hawthorn Leisure Centre and further personalised trampoline therapy for the students of Ysgol Hen Felin in Ystrad.
Rebounder’s head coach and founder, Heather Sargent, received the insport Silver Standard only in April this year, but has since continued with her efforts to now reach the top accreditation from Disability Sport Wales.
Partnership Manager of Disability Sport Wales, Michelle Daltry, chose to present Rebounders with the insport Gold plaque, during a disability summer camp being held at Sport Wales National Centre in Cardiff.
Michelle Daltry said, “Disability Sport Wales wish to congratulate Rebounders Trampoline Club on their achievement of the insport Club Gold standard. It is a real testament to the calibre of work they are currently doing, and have committed to do in the future, and will ensure the ongoing development of inclusive planning and provision of opportunity to disabled people.”
On being presented the esteemed award Heather commented: “I am delighted to receive this honour, recognising the passion and pledge from the Rebounders team to commit to spreading the word that trampolining is an activity for all. It strengthens limbs and improves muscle tone, helps with co-ordination, balance and spatial awareness. It is also one of the few sports that can be undertaken by children with no speech, no mobility and no sight. We welcome all abilities and will continue to commit to working hard to offer inclusive sport for all.”
Television presenter Gethin Jones – who has been patron of the charity since September 2013 where his nine-year-old autistic nephew regularly attends – has seen first-hand the work and commitment from the club’s coaches: “I’m so happy for Rebounders and not in the least surprised that the club has become the first sports club in Wales to be recognised for their fantastic work to offer inclusive sport. Heather and her team give countless hours and unsurpassable effort to ensure that each child and adult in Wales can access the riches of sport, regardless of physical, mental or social disability.”