Young people in Sefton recently took part in a pioneering first for disabled sport in Sefton and Merseyside, inspired by Rio’s Paralympics.
Taking place at Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre, 28 young people aged 8-25years with special educational needs and disabilities participated in a Para-Triathlon to emulate the inspiring athletes representing Team GB in Brazil.
Leading up to the event, Sefton Council worked in partnership with Sport England to create the perfect training programme for young people with additional needs to take part.
The Para-Triathlon was designed to test the participants in three key areas; water swimming (150m), cycling (4K) and running (2.5K).
All 7 categories were well contested and there were a number of inspiring performances, including the following winners:
Senior Female, Panability – Gill Lofthouse
Over 18 Male Learning Difficulties / Autism – Owen Kewn
Over 18 Female Learning Difficulties / Autism – Sarah Bricklebank
Over 18 Physical Disability – Dan Harden
Under 18 Male Learning Difficulties / Autism – Jim O’Keefe
U15 Male Physical Disability – Sam Lofthouse
U15 Female Learning Difficulties / Autism – Lilli Crangle.
The event builds on a fantastic summer of sport for disabled young people, with record numbers taking part in mainstream sporting activities with their peers.
John Doran, Inclusion Practitioner at Sefton Council, said: “We are very proud of the huge strides our young people have made this summer. The Para-Triathlon was the culmination of a fantastic training programme where young people with a range of additional needs pushed themselves to the limit.
“Taking encouragement from the success of this event, we will be hosting regular para-triathlons and speaking with our partners in the neighbouring Merseyside local authorities to organise a Merseyside-wide para-triathlon for children, young people and families.”
Cllr. John-Joseph Kelly, Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Safeguarding at Sefton Council said: “Like people up and down the country, I kept a keen eye on the fortunes of Team GB at the Paralympics in Rio and it’s great to see young people in Sefton taking inspiration from our Paralympians.
“I was also heartened to see so many families, friends and the wider community encouraging our young people in an incredible feat.”
To get involved, contact Sefton Council’s Aiming High Short Breaks team on 0151 288 6811, by email email@example.com or by via Facebook /seftonaiminghigh