Blind athletics shows schoolboy faces no barrier to sport

Kids take part in the Action For Blind People athletics event at EISS in Sheffield

Kids take part in the Action For Blind People athletics event at EISS in Sheffield

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A SCHOOLBOY has shown that being visually impaired is no barrier to enjoying competitive sport.

Oliver Elliot was one of 150 visually impaired youngsters to compete in the UK’s biggest athletics event for blind children, run by Action for Blind People.

The Seaham eight-year-old is a member of Sunderland Actionnaires, one of 29 multi-activity clubs for blind and partially sighted children, supporting them in enjoying full and active lives.

Oliver took part in the vertical and long jump, and the javelin, with other visually impaired children at the prestigious English Institute of Sport in Sheffield. They represented 20 towns and cities.

“It was a brilliant day,” said the New Seaham Primary School pupil.

“The Paralympic games have made me want to do even more sport.”

He added: “I made friends with other children and found out that because they can’t see, many don’t get chances to take part in sport outside local Actionnaires clubs.

“That’s why this event was so special.”

Lesley Inganni, development manager at Action for Blind People, said: “We’re extremely grateful to have had Boots Opticians as sponsor, and the support of British Blind Sport, with some of their young members joining our Actionnaires in the athletics.

“Every year it gets bigger and better and we were delighted to return to the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield.”

She added: “You never know, these children could be Paralympians of the future.”

Actionnaires clubs are open to blind and partially sighted children aged four to 16.

Visit www.actionforblindpeople.org.uk/children.