More than 600 people have taken part in a special programme aimed at encouraging people with disabilities to take part in sport since it was set up in Donegal in 2008.
The Sports Inclusion Disability Programme (SIDO) established with an overall aim of increasing the participation of people with disabilities in sport and recreational physical activity.
The SIDO programme is a national initiative under the umbrella of the Irish Sports Council and managed locally by the Donegal Sports Partnership.
Since its inception there have been many new and exciting developments in the area of disability sport and it is hoped that 2012 will see many more.
The initiative which has proved a success in Donegal is now entering its fifth year and to-date has seen over 600 individuals participate in sport and recreational physical activity with 700 having partaken in education and training courses.
A range of programmes now exist through the project in Donegal including; martial arts, wheelchair sports fundamental games, gaelic games, soccer, powerchair football, boccia, surfing and athletics to name a few.
The “Sports Inclusion Disability Officer Programme Report 2009-2011” has just been launched by Mr Dinny McGinley, Minister of State at the Department of Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs.
The report summarises the key developments within the SIDO initiative, refreshes the key aims and objectives of the project and promotes ongoing and active participation of people of all abilities in sport and recreational physical activity.
Sports Inclusion Disability Officer with Donegal Sports Partnership Thérèse Laverty said the success of the programme was down to many people.
“It’s great to have the opportunity to promote not only the work that has been done over the past few years but also the opportunities which now exist for the participation of people with disabilities of all ages in sport and physical activity.
“I would like to extend my thanks to the participants, community, voluntary and disability organisations, volunteers, schools and clubs who have supported our work. Also without the support of funding from agencies such as the Health Service Executive, Donegal Local Development Company and Irish Sports Council the project could not continue, so their support is very much appreciated. I look forward to developing the project further within the coming years.”
The SIDO report is available for download by visiting our website www.activedonegal.com and for further information or queries please contact Donegal Sports Partnership on 074 (91) 16078/16079 or by email on firstname.lastname@example.org .
Special Guests at the launch of the Sports Inclusion Disability Officer Programme Report – Myles Sweeney (Coordinator Donegal Sports Partnership), Emma Jane Clarke (Irish Sports Council), Noel McBride (Mayor of Donegal), Dinny McGinley (Minister of State at the Department of Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs), Thérèse Laverty (SIDO Donegal Sports Partnership), Eamon Harvey (Chairman Donegal Sports Partnership) and Michael McGeehin (Coaching Ireland)