Thanks to a generous grant from Sport England, we were able to provide three specialised football frames for Chadderton Park Sports Club in Oldham for their Cerebral Palsy Football Team.
Being part of the team benefits the physical, social and emotional development of the young players, as well as offering a sense of community and cohesion for them and their parents or carers.
The young people with cerebral palsy on the team have varying levels of mobility. Some can walk independently, while others require aids such as walking frames or crutches. The walking frames provided for these players are usually not suited to activities like football, leaving them unable to play to their full potential.
The new bespoke football frames are modified to be wider at the front to allow more room for a football. These specialised frames make a huge difference by enabling team members to play to their full potential.
Six-year-old Olivia Berry is one of the players benefiting from the use of a football frame. Her mum Christie says: “Olivia used to fall over and when the ball came to her it would get stuck in her legs and the frame. This new frame has made a big difference and she was so chuffed to be going round telling everyone she had scored 12 goals the first time she used it.
“She absolutely loves going to Chaddy Park. There’s nothing else like it around and it’s great for Olivia to be with children who are in the same situation. It’s also been really helpful for me to get to speak to other parents who have children with cerebral palsy and find out information I would not have found out about otherwise.”
Evelyn Glarvey, MedEquip4Kids Project Coordinator, says: “This project is outside of our usual support of funding for equipment and facilities in hospitals and healthcare, but we felt it was important to help because it would improve the health and wellbeing of the young footballers.”