Fundraising support for budding athletes
Caudwell Children is calling on disabled athletes who need specialist sports equipment to contact them for fundraising support.
The charity can part fund equipment for disabled children and young people who are actively competing in sport.
And the charity says that it would welcome applications, for a range of sports equipment, from interested athletes.
As Lisa Bates, Associate Director of Core Services, explained: “Most people recognise the physical and social benefits of children actively participating in sport. Unfortunately, specialist equipment to help disabled children compete can cost up to 100 times more than its able-bodied equivalent. Therefore, cost is a real barrier to participation for disabled athletes!
“In response to this we can support disabled children irrespective of their ability, giving them the opportunity to reach their potential in sport. We will do all that we can to help athletes to raise the necessary funding that will enable them to achieve their sporting ambitions.”
Adaptive equipment is a prerequisite for a number of sports including basketball, football, rugby, tennis, athletics and archery. This means that many disabled athletes are desperately in need of specialist equipment, such as wheelchairs and prosthetic limbs.
Lisa says that the charity has a dedicated PR team who work with the regional media of each applicant to generate a high profile ‘Appeal’ campaign that engages with the local and regional community.
“The team create compelling news stories around each applicant which are used in regional press to inform the community of their needs,” continued Lisa. “This can also extend to broadcast media which brings each applicants story to life within their community.
“Giving local people a sense of ownership of an appeal can have a massive impact on donations and often encourages local fundraising activities on behalf of our applicants.
”Inevitably, the families themselves have to be involved in the fundraising process, organising a range of fundraising events to add to the coffers. However, our PR team can get you started by setting up a Just Giving page to help people donate quickly and easily online. Together we can achieve fantastic results in a shorter space of time.”
Caudwell Children has supported children and young people from grass roots to elite level and Lisa is justifiably proud of those that the charity has supported. As she explained: “I suppose the highlight has to be 22-year-old Hollie Arnold (MBE) who broke the world record when she secured the gold medal in the F47 javelin in the 2016 Paralympics in Rio.
“Hollie’s parents contacted the charity when she was just 14-years-old. We supplied the then budding Paralympian with four javelins, two pairs of javelin spikes, two weight training balls and a specially weighted prosthetic throwing arm, which helps her to balance when throwing.
“To see how far she’s come is a real inspiration and justification of the support that we give to disabled athletes.”
Hollie is convinced that without Caudwell Children’s support her career could have been different. She said: “Simply put if Caudwell Children hadn’t helped me there would have been no way for me to compete. Their fundraising support helped me to get the £4,400 I required to buy the equipment that I desperately needed.
“If I hadn’t got the equipment my career would have been over before it had started.”
Hollie’s mum Jill, aged 52, is keen to promote the value of Caudwell Children’s services. As she explained: “It saddens me to think of all those disabled children and young people out there who want to compete but can’t. They need to know that Caudwell Children’s Equipment programme can help them to enter the sporting arena at local, regional or national level.”
Lisa now wants Hollie’s success to encourage others to contact the charity. As she concluded: “Hollie is a real inspiration and hopefully more parents will now apply to the charity for specialist sports equipment.
“Participation in sport develops confidence and self-esteem, increases health and creates lasting social networks. I would urge families to contact us to find out how we may be able to support their child’s sporting dreams.”
For further information telephone Elaine Revans on 01782 600265 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org