Aviva Community Fund
Aviva Community Fund
WE NEED YOUR HELP!! Please vote for us in the Aviva Community Fund to help us run a community outreach programme
Wessex Warriors is the only Powerchair Football Club in Dorset with the next nearest club for disabled football players based in Portsmouth. Powerchair Football is an official version of Association Football and the only version where all ages and genders compete together. To compete at National and International Levels, players need to be assessed and meet classification requirements based on their level of disability. Currently there are 2 levels of classification for players. P1 players will have major mobility and movement issues. P2 players will be less disabled, but still have impaired movement. Most players either have cerebral palsy type conditions or muscular dystrophy conditions. Powerchair Football is the only dynamic, fast paced team sport for the severely disabled.
The club was started with 7 players and we have now grown to be one of largest clubs in the country with 25 players training and competing regularly. Our youngest player is 9 years old and our oldest player is over 40 years old. We are one of only three Powerchair Clubs in the country to have been awarded the FA Charter Standard, an award that recognises excellence in club administration, an important step in continuing to provide sporting opportunities to the disabled athletes of Dorset.
Wessex Warriors has ambitions to compete in the national Championship and ultimately the Premiership Powerchair League. New chair specifications have been approved by the WFA (Wheelchair Football Association) meaning previous models of chair will now place players at a competitive disadvantage due to turning speed, chair stability and mechanical performance. As the sport continues to grow and develop so does Wessex Warriors and the additional chairs will allow more players to train within the club at the same time, as well as allow teams to compete on equal terms with other clubs.
Our current first team squad is made up of players that have muscular dystrophy (MD) and cerebral palsy. Seven of these players have Duchenne’s MD, a severe muscle wasting disease that shortens life expectancy to around 25 years old and causes deterioration in physical abilities from around 4 years old onwards. With the limitations of the current modified medical chairs we have, players can find it harder to overcome their disabilities and experience the game to the fullest. The new chairs that have been approved, are designed specifically for Powerchair Football and can be easily adapted to suit many disabilities and player needs.
The club also runs outreach sessions in local schools and the chairs will allow additional people to take part in these sessions. These sessions are a great showcases for disability sport and allow both disabled and able bodied participants to take part on a equal level. We have also developed links with Help for Heroes and have begun running regular sessions for rehabilitating servicemen and women. The additional chairs would increase our capacity at these sessions.
We need to purchase 3 new Football Powerchairs that conform to the new specifications to allow players to compete in the South East Powerchair League effectively, provide training opportunities for all our athletes and allow for further sessions to take place within the community.