On the Sunday 6th October Rotherham United joined in the celebrations for the World Cerebral Palsy Day. That day aims to raise awareness of Cerebral Palsy and brings attention to the specific needs of those living with the complex physical condition, as well as celebrating the achievements of people living with CP.
Here at Rotherham United Community Sports Trust we are an inclusive organisation that respects differences in race, disability, gender, and faiths. With workers coming from all backgrounds, including Joseph Clarke one of our community coaches, with Cerebral Palsy. To celebrate world CP day, we conducted an interview with Joseph:
What is your role in RUCST?
I’m a Football Coach, working in the disability football side of the trust with Steve Coddington, bringing new ideas to how we should evolve to current programme we deliver.
How inclusive are the staff and the participants of RUCST?
RUCST have been very inclusive they give everyone a chance no matter their disability, u have been welcomed into the trust with them organising a FA level 2 course for me so I am fully qualified to work in the sporting environment. I’ll admit for inclusion there is still a lot more that can be done in disability Equality but Rotherham United can only do so much and try their best to accommodate the needs of anyone.
What is the best part about coming into RUCST?
The trust operates an equal playing field and give me the same opportunities that everyone else in the trust have, these opportunities help me to succeed. The working environment is a friendly one with everyone interested in yourself and how you are doing. The best thing is that it enables myself to grow and with my personal experiences inspire other people with a disability to see my success and show them with the right drive and determination you can do anything.
Are they any advice you would give to others with CP about getting involved with sport?
If you want to get involved with sport contact CP Sport, they are experts in the field and will help you get into whatever sport you want to start. If you want to get into football be it coaching or playing look into contacting your local EFL football club. One quote I’ve always gone by is from my favourite band Shinedown is ‘if your ever in doubt don’t sell yourself short it might be hard to move mountains when your paralysed, but you’ve got to try’
Are they any other comments you want to share?
The club as a whole are really helpful and understanding especially when I am taking part in Para training and competing in my swimming competitions, scheduling my working hours around these events. I’ve spoken to Paul Douglas (RUFC Chief operations officer) and he has organized help with Ross Burbeary (RUFC Performance Manager) about my diet and what I need to work on with my swimming alongside work. This has helped me as I’ve gone from finishing in middle positions to getting golf and silver. This is just one example of how Rotherham United support you; I really enjoy working for the club and hope I can make a big difference to people with disabilities in the Rotherham community.
RUCST are committed to supporting people from all backgrounds and abilities, if you would like to find out about the project we are currently running or how you can get involved with the trust contact us on 01709 827767 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.