Monthly Archives: August 2012

Welcome to the Olympic Park

Well it is Wednesday 29th August and a well earned rest day for me.  The Paralympic Flame is making its way around the London Boroughs on its way to the Stadium for the Opening Ceremony so no training today.

Monday and Tuesday of this week saw me start my shifts at 7 30am and finishing around 3pm. 

Monday.   I was based at the Olympic warm up track.  This was a very important day for some athletes as it was classification day for those who needed confirmation of their level of disability.   

Classification is a unique element of Paralympic sports, intended to ensure fair competition. As each sport at the Paralympic Games requires different skills and competencies, the impact of impairment on the performance of the athletes varies. That’s why each sport has its own unique classification rules.

My task was to accompany the members of the Classification team and mark sections of track and throwing areas so they could assess athlete’s ability. At this point I must add my learning curve is at an arc, so high I can’t see it!  I learned that some conditions change and so this changes the classification the athletes will compete in.  

“T” class is track athletes, “ F” class is field athletes (throws, javelin, discus, shot and club) This took most of my morning shift.  This was a very tense time for some athletes. I finished by helping meeting and greeting all the other teams scheduled to use the track.   The Australian team arrived en mass in 2 buses, noisy and full of fun and mischief, hijacking 2 team tents and putting up flags everywhere!  They were soon on the track in their wheelchairs whizzing around at manic speeds. 

Tuesday.  I was back at Mayesbrook Park.  It’s much quieter here, well it was until we were informed the wheelchair rugby and the judo teams were arriving today as well as the track and field athletes.

The wheelchair rugby teams Belgium France and Japan were reasonably well behaved but we also had to help organise the delivery of all their competition chairs as they arrived in very large lorries!!!!!!!!! Then a flutter of excitement as TEAMGB were on the next bus.  All the Games makers lined the entrance to the sports hall as they arrived.  An enthusiastic welcome for them and what a welcome they had, waves, cheers, and they certainly knew who had arrived! I think they appreciated the reception. Oh, how I wish I had tickets to watch the matches. 

Back to work on the track.  It was a busy day of sorting out correct weights of discus, shot and javelin.  (The learning curve going forever upwards) I had not realised how many different weights of shot and javelin, and smaller sizes for those with limited hand and arm strength. 

Then needs must and the boring domestic boring things, like replacing towels in the changing rooms, replenishing refreshments areas, picking up the odd piece of litter, but its all “Paralympic stuff” so everything all adds to the perception of how we create a perfect Games. 

Plus the fun as well, that everyone joins in with adding to the spirit of the games.  I was soon doing a jig with the Nigerian Lady in her wheelchair to Nottinghill Carnival music. Then helping to find a lost chair, for the one and only athlete who has come from the Solomon Islands.  Apparently she couldn’t afford proper equipment but in the training camp in Cardiff met a technician who made her a custom built piece of equipment, worked overnight and free of charge and presented it to her on her departure. So it had to be found.  Thanks to lorry drivers, security guys and bus drivers it arrived safe and sound.  Good luck to her in the games. 

 I must also say I am thankful to my son and his wife for putting up with the disruption I cause!  Yes, getting my Son out of bed at 5am to drop me at the station for the 5.45 am train. 

Signing out now.

Grace

London 2012 Paralympics: Graces’s Blog

Grace Hough from Telford Harriers/Shrewsbury AC has kindly offered to blog for SDN after She applied and was accepted as a volunteer at the London 2012 Paralympics. Grace having completed her training now shares with us her initial thoughts/experience.

The first three days.

The Euphoria wild excitement and sheer magic of the Olympics has not subsided here inLondon.  The Olympic stadium has become the Paralympic Stadium.  All the Logos have been changed and the symbol onTowerBridgehas evolved into the Paralymic Logo.  Mandeville has replaced Wenlock as the mascot.  I also have my uniform to wear with pride.

My first three days have been manic!  Two days at a training venue and one day at the stadium assisting athletes on the track and field.  We have very early starts and late finishes.

The Olympic Park is surreal as it is closed to the public as it redressed for the Games.  A quiet peace surrounds the venues which remind me of sleeping giants waiting to awake.

The athletes come from all over the world with so many disabilities.  Some are wheelchair bound others ambulant.  Others visually impaired and run, or throw with guides.    They are all carefully classified according to the disability.  To many categories to list here, but that adds greatness to these games. There is an amazing selection of sports, all taken up by people with disabilities, all being given an opportunity, carefully grouped with fairness taken into account.

The logistics are a nightmare as athletes arrive in buses at the track or throws area and their implements such as specialised chairs too heavy to carry, arrive in a removal van!  All have to be reunited.

The training venue is a peaceful place where athletes can do their final training sessions without interruptions and they can relax and have massage and physiotherapy facilities close at hand.  The goal of the team I am involved with is to make the athletes as comfortable as possible and make them feel welcome at all levels.

So far I have met athletes fromRussia,China,Japan,Argentina,Bulgaria,Kenya,Latviato mention just a few.

I will keep you updated over the next few days as things progress: Grace.

 

Shropshire Disability Network are so pleased and very grateful to Grace who responded to our letter in the Shropshire Star/Chronicle earlier this year. It is helping us to feed her experiences and the experiences of others with you.

Free Health Check-Would you like one?

Start Date:
13th September 2012

End Date:
13th September 2012

Start Time:
10:00 am

End Time:
4:00 pm

Event title: Free Health Check-Would you like one?
Start date: 13/09/2012
End date: 13/09/2012
Start time: 10am
End time: 4pm
Venue: Ludlow Event Square, Ludlow SY8 1AY
Event description: The West Midlands Health Bus will be at Ludlow Square to provide access to information and local services as well as giving you the opportunity to chat to healthcare professionals about concerns you may have about your health. This event is being supported by the Carers Support Service. Advice on practical changes for health improvement: eating more healthily, stopping smoking, diabetes, blood pressure, respiratory care to name a few things you could discuss. Please tell your friends, families and neighbours as this is an ideal opportunity for many people. No need to book, just come along.
Weblink: www.shropshire-rcc.org.uk

Name: Glenda Jordan
Contact email: [email protected]
Contact number: 01743 341995

Every Day First Aid Practical Workshop for Carers

Start Date:
4th October 2012

End Date:
4th October 2012

Start Time:
10:30 am

End Time:
12:00 pm

Event title: Every Day First Aid Practical Workshop for Carers
Start date: 04/10/2012
End date: 04/10/2012
Start time: 10.30am
End time: 12.30pm
Venue: Council Chamber, Guildhall, Oswestry
Event description: This an event that is being provided by Carers Support Service Via our Learning Together programme. It is important that you book a place. In the past we have found these workshops extremely helpful to carers. Refreshments will be provided and are FREE to family carers. If you would like more information, please contact Julie on 01743 237888
Weblink: www.shropshire-rcc.org.uk/carers

Name: Julie Wenlock
Contact email: [email protected]
Contact number: 01743 237888

Nutrition and Hydration Workshop

Start Date:
2nd October 2012

End Date:
2nd October 2012

Start Time:
2:00 pm

End Time:
4:00 pm

Event title: Nutrition and Hydration Workshop
Start date: 02/10/2012
End date: 02/10/2012
Start time: 2pm
End time: 4pm
Venue: Mayfair Centre, Easthope Road, Church Stretton SY6 6BL
Event description: This is being put on by Carers Support Service as part of their Learning Together programme. Refreshments will be provided and are FREE to family carers. To book a place please contact Dice or Jenny on 01694 722024
Weblink: www.shropshire-rcc.org.uk/carers

Name: Jenny
Contact email: [email protected]
Contact number: 01694 722024

Health and well Being Day for Carers

Start Date:
10th October 2012

End Date:
10th October 2012

Start Time:
10:30 am

End Time:
3:00 pm

Event title: Health and well Being Day for Carers
Start date: 10/10/2012
End date: 10/10/2012
Start time: 10.30am
End time: 3.00pm
Venue: The Baptist Church, Claremont Street, Shrewsbury SY1 1QG
Event description: When did you last feel completely relaxed and happy? If the answer is “I can’t remember…” then make sure you come to this event. For many of us who are caring for someone life can be stressful. Time to relax and look after our own needs and interests is very important. Carers support service invites you to a day of workshops
Weblink: www.shropshire-rcc.org.uk/carers

Name: Glenda Jordan
Contact email: [email protected]
Contact number: 01743 341995

Carers Right Day-Shropshire Event

Start Date:
30th November 2012

End Date:
30th November 2012

Start Time:
10:30 am

End Time:
1:00 pm

Event title: Carers Right Day-Shropshire Event
Start date: 30/11/2012
End date: 30/11/2012
Start time: 10.30am
End time: 1pm
Venue: The Guildhall, Frankwell, Shrewsbury SY3 8HQ
Event description: Carers Rights Day is on 30th November 2012 so Shropshire Community Council are holding a Special Free event for Carers but you need to book a place to avoid disappointment. Key speaker will be Luke Clements, Professor at Cardiff Law School, Director of Health and Social Care Law and a solicitor with Scott-Moncrieff Associates LLP (London) Luke represents disabled and older people and their carers as well as acting for many of the UK’s leading charities. Luke has written widely and he is recognised for writing for Community Care and the Law (jointly written with Pauline Thompson): Disabled Children: a legal handbook (jointly with Stephen Broach and Janet Read) and Carers and their Rights (Carers Uk)

Name: Glenda Jordan
Contact email: [email protected]
Contact number: 01743 341995

Omega Meeting Point: Next Shrewsbury Meeting

Start Date:
21st August 2012

End Date:
21st August 2012

Start Time:
12:15

A new friendly drop-in service for familycarers, former carers and the bereaved

  • Perhaps you look after a close friendor a family member, or you used tocare for someone.
  • Maybe you live alone or you just wantto find out how you can help us sharethe caring.
  • All welcome; refreshments provided

Tuesday 21st August 2012 12:15pmOmega Head Office, London House, Town Walls, SY11TX

Booking essential for catering purposes

To book or to find out more, call 0845 259 3163 or email [email protected]

Mayor's Charity Bike Ride for Cystic Fibrosis Trust and Hope House Children's Hospice

Start Date:
22nd September 2012

End Date:
23rd August 2012

Start Time:
Ask for details

End Time:
Various

Event title: Mayor’s Charity Bike Ride for Cystic Fibrosis Trust and Hope House Children’s Hospice
Start date: 22/09/2012
End date: 23/09/2012
Start time: Please ask for details
End time: Various
Venue: Starting in Shrewsbury
Event description: This Charity Bike Ride has been set up by Shrewsbury Mayor Councillor Keith Roberts to help raise funds for his chosen charities for 2012/2013-Cystic Fibrosis Trust and Hope House Children’s Hospice. Councillor Roberts is encouraging members to take part in this 76 mile ride which starts in Shrewsbury and ends at Abergavenny which is his home town. It will include an overnight stop on route and participants will arrive in Abergavenny on the Sunday afternoon. A civic reception hosted by the Mayor of Abergaveeny will be held on arrival in the town. To take part participants are required to pay a registration fee of £35 and raise at least £250 in sponsorship. For more details please call the Mayor’s secretary Carol Pullen on 01743 257655Name: Carol Pullen

Contact email: [email protected]
Contact number: 01743 257655