Wendy joined Disability Sports Coach’s network of Community Clubs back in 2013. The community clubs are pan-disability multi-sports clubs open to all ages. Starting out as an enthusiastic member, Wendy showed great signs of progress, and her love of sport and helping others led her to becoming a volunteer in 2015. Wendy learnt how to support a coach within a sports session and takes on any task no matter how big or small – from organising equipment to being a group leader.
Having a learning disability herself, Wendy is an excellent role model to our members and her fellow volunteers. An outstanding aspect of Wendy’s volunteering is her ability to work one-on-one, particularly with those participants with higher needs. In addition to supporting other individuals at the club, Wendy also supports the general coaching, for example running warm-ups and small team games.
In recent years Wendy has highlighted her commitment to coaching others by completing an impressive range of courses, including her Level 1 Football Coaching accreditation, a Baseball Activators Course and several training activities with Disability Sports Coach, continuing to do what it takes to improve each year.
Wendy has volunteered at 5 of our 14 Community Clubs, more than any of her peers. She has led sports stations at our Clubs and events, meaning that she is often the face of Disability Sports Coach. Wendy has also taken on responsibilities at other local clubs and organisations such as Southwark Stars Disability Football Club and the Change Foundation.
Wendy continued to support our charity despite the devastating impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. While our clubs and events were postponed, Wendy volunteered to support many of our online sessions during lockdown, providing a familiar and friendly face for many members who were feeling lonely and isolated She also did a takeover of our social media and led the warmup for our online sessions, motivating members to keep active in these challenging times.
Wendy’s fantastic efforts have been recognised by Disability Sports Coach as she was named the 2019 Club Woman of the year. Wendy was also nominated for the London Sport Volunteer of the Year Award in 2017 and has received Achievement and Leader Awards from the Jack Petchey Foundation. Wendy has further supported our fundraising opportunities, by taking part in the Big Half (2017) and the Westminster mile (2019), raising £110 for Disability Sports Coach at the latter.
Wendy is an extremely valued member, friend, volunteer, coach, role model and more within in our Community Clubs. Her enthusiasm is recognised by our CEO Peter Ackred, who said, “Wendy’s endless energy and love for the sport is infectious. We are very lucky to have Wendy as one of our lead volunteers at Disability Sports Coach, empowering those around her to live healthier, happier lives.”