By Simar Anand
A sport England grand scheme is changing people’s lives and they are now being provided with great opportunities. This is a change being brought into activities from sensory tennis to climbing. People such as Dieumerci Yanga and Kian Kotecha are examples of how, despite the complex disabilities, the extreme sports have changed their lives.
Dieumerci Yanga couldn’t completely recover from the seizure he faced at the age of three that caused notable brain damage and inability to talk or see clearly. However, the 27 year old was seen working out at the local boxing ring with the skill and focus as any beginner or person would have. His support worker in an interview says “we’ve tried a range of more gentle sports and none have engaged Dieumerci like boxing has”.
19 – year – old Kian Kotecha has autism, ADHD and epilepsy. He started lessons at his local climbing centre. His father says “Kian can already climb walls that would be a challenge for someone who didn’t have disabilities. It’s amazing: he struggles to clean his teeth but he can happily climb right to the top of the climbing wall”. He also believes that he needs he same excitement that other youngsters would like but “life doesn’t often offer those opportunities to those with complex disabilities.”
People like Kian and Dieumerci are able to explore new opportunities due to some benefits from the charity ‘Sense’, a charity for people with complex disabilities with a funding of 2.2 million from the Sports England grant. Sense believes that these events can help them at home, education and social life.