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Wheelpower’s National Junior Games

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Wheelpower’s National Junior Games

May 2024 –

Today marks the beginning of the National Junior Games, as more than 100 children are welcomed back to Stoke Mandeville Stadium in Buckinghamshire. The event offers individuals the chance to participate in a variety of wheelchair sports such as tennis, rugby, basketball, and numerous others.

Anna Twentyman CFO of The Kentown Wizard Foundation:

“The National Junior Games is a fantastic event which enables children with physical disabilities to discover a passion for sport in a safe and inclusive environment. This will be our 3rd year of funding the event and witnessing the long-lasting and maybe even life-changing benefits that come with the games. We hope everyone has an incredible time!”

The ethos of the Games is to “Achieve your Personal Best”. The Children attending will experience high-quality coaching from qualified coaches before taking part in fun challenges, aiming to achieve their personal best throughout the week.

Children just like Yasmina, 14 from London who attended her second National Junior Games last year. After having a brilliant time the year prior she was excited to return to Stoke Mandeville Stadium and discover some more sports.

Yasmina has Fredrich’s Ataxia, a rare disease that causes damage to the spinal cord, peripheral nerves, and the cerebellum portion of the brain.

“There’s lots of different ataxias and Fredrich’s ataxia is one of the most complex and one of the hardest. It involves a lot of chronic pain and I’ve got scoliosis but there’s still lots we don’t know. There’s no treatment so far but hopefully one day there will be. My condition is neurological so it affects my nerves and how quick the reactions are. I can walk but in my condition by the age of 14 which I am now, you should stop walking. But I can still walk and I always try to fight to always be able to walk. So far I can only walk with my walking frame and only for short distances but I’m trying more and more every day to get better and not get worse.”

Coming to the Games gives Yasmina the opportunity to try a wide variety of sports and enjoy the physical and social benefits of sport.

“So far i’ve tried wheelchair basketball, tennis, fencing, archery, boccia and table tennis and shooting! So i’ve tried a lot and i’m going to try more and soon i’m going to try swimming. When I play sports I feel like I’m free and I’m in to it. I love playing sports and it’s really important to my wellbeing and health.

After attending the event Yasmina discovered a love for two particular sports, Tennis and Horse Riding. She now regularly attends both and continues to develop her talent and skillset with the support of a fantastic team of coaches.

“I would definitely recommend the games to other people with disabilities because it’s such an amazing event, you make friends and feel included. You can’t feel left out when you’re playing sports and it’s just really fun.”

Martin McElhatton OBE, Wheelpower Chief Executive:

“WheelPower are hugely thankful to The Kentown Wizard Foundation for their tremendous support for the 2024 National Junior Games being held at Stoke Mandeville Stadium in June.  The Games provide over 100 disabled children with the opportunity to try more than 20 sports and to promote their physical and mental wellbeing.  Most importantly the Games enable the young people to come together and share a truly memorable week of sport, achieving their personal best and being inspired to make sport part of their everyday life. We are tremendously appreciative of the support from the Trustees of the Foundation which has enabled this very special event to take place.”

Charity Registration number: 265498