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Andrew Simpson Foundation and World Sailing work together to support para sailors and #backthebid

by Andrew Simpson Foundation 18 May 11:00 UTC
Rory © Andrew Simpson Foundation

On Sunday 8th May the Andrew Simpson Centre in Portland ran the annual Children in Need (CiN) Aiming High Open Day for children Aged 6 to 13 with special educational needs as a pathway into watersports.


Research shows that being on and around the water has an incredibly positive effect on physical and mental wellbeing. For young people struggling with their mental and physical health, Aiming High provides a regular sailing programme which focuses upon boosting their sense of self-worth. Aiming High, funded by the Andrew Simpson Foundation (ASF) and Children in Need (CiN), helps young people deal with stress and emotions, alongside the excitement and challenges of learning a new skill.

The ASF also intends this programme to provide opportunities for those that would not otherwise have them, and hope that they will more readily try new activities in the future.

The World Sailing Trust has recently donated a SV14 to the Andrew Simpson Centre Portland. At our Aiming High / CiN Open day, para-sailor Jazz Turner experienced the many benefits of the vessel.

"This provides an opportunity for people to experience the joy of sailing regardless of disability. It provides a stable but exciting platform with the fun addition of a Spinnaker. It allows both able bodied and disabled people to compete together in the same boat. It's a fully inclusive class that provides fun to all".

Jazz Turner- Para sailor and ASF supporter

"We are incredibly excited to offer bespoke sailing opportunities to young people with mental or physical disability. This comes at such a crucial time in the campaign to reinstate sailing in the Paralympics. Grassroots sailing for people with disabilities is an essential springboard for the parasailing pathways".

Alex Porter- ASC Portland Centre Manager.


World Sailing has launched a global campaign for sailing to be reinstated at the Los Angeles 2028 Paralympic Games. Since the #BacktheBid campaign began in October 2021, the global sailing and sports community has come together to show its support for sailing to be reinstated.

2022 is critical - this year the International Paralympic Committee will decide which sports make it onto the Los Angeles 2028 Paralympic Games programme. Sailing is a sport for all - for athletes around the world of all sexes and with a broad range of impairments.

David Graham, CEO of World Sailing said: "Our para sailing athletes are some of the most accomplished sailors in the world, inspiring the next generation. Our para sailors also represent one of the broadest ranges of physical and sensory abilities that I have ever seen in global sport."


In addition to the opportunities provided for grassroots sailing, the ASF is campaigning for #backthebid and supporting UK para sailors through ASC Performance Academy coaches and the use of a RS Venture Connect in ASC Portland, based at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy. This is the class of boat selected for the U25 Para World Championships this summer, run by World Sailing and supported by the RYA.

Show your support and #BacktheBid

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