Deer Park Archers volunteers provided an archery experience to many of the participants that attended a Special Olympics Taster day at the Cheltenham Leisure Centre and Prince of Wales Athletic Stadium. Over 800 people with a range of disabilities had been invited to try sports that included golf, athletics, gymnastics, badminton and tennis.
The Special Olympics is the worlds largest sports organisation for children and adults with learning disabilities and this event was being used as part of the preparation for Leisure @ to bring the full event to the county.
The day was a huge success with all the activities stretched to the limit, Deer Park provided 10 volunteers for the day and ran have a goes and ‘Arrows’ activities.
Dan Brookes, Cheltenham Trust Board member said ‘The event went better than any of the organising committee could have imagined. The participants loved the variety of sports on offer and archery was without a doubt the most popular! ‘
Roger Crang, Deer Park Archers Club Development Officer said ‘ Our extensive experience working with a wide range of disabilities proved essential in supporting this event, whilst incredibly rewarding it was very demanding, we look forward to supporting even bigger events of this type.
Archery is not currently included as a sport within the formal Special Olympics Programme and that is disappointing!’
The Cheltenham steering group was formed from a wide range of different organisations they are:
The Cheltenham Trust, Active Gloucestershire, NHS 2Gether Trust, Learning and Disability Partnership Board, Gloucestershire Voices, Allsorts and the Gloucestershire County Council.
Earlier in the week some of the Deer Park Coaches had attended a National Deaf Children’s Society Workshop funded by the Archery Foundation to learn how to make our sport more deaf friendly and that proved to be very useful at the event.
The Club is making a Me2 Deaf-friendly leisure activities pledge which it will put into action.
Half Term Community Halloween Shoot
2 days later we were back at the recreation centre supporting a programme organised by the council, targeting any age up to 8 years old. With soft play areas, circus skills, face painting and of course archery. The Arrows kit again proved invaluable and was a great way of introducing young children and their parents to our sport. The event was well advertised and very well attended.
Clout Target Day
Saturday morning saw the first formal clout competition take place on our new field. A number of County Records were broken! Full report to follow.
The Club holds it’s first indoor target day at Balcarras this Sunday when a Portsmouth has been organized. Many of our more experienced archers will be at the GWAS Regional Championships.
New venture for the club?
We are always considering good options to boost club income, this one is still under review!