Sport Development in Bermuda

As I reflect on my past year, I thought I would share an opportunity I had this summer to demonstrate Boccia, and meet some amazing up and coming athletes with disabilities – in warm and beautiful Bermuda.

Windreach, an amazing facility, on the relatively small island of Bermuda exposes people with disabilities to all sorts of recreation – including competitive sport. A beautiful farm property, it is host to Equestrian events, community programs, an integrated camp experience and adapted sport opportunities.

I was invited to demonstrate Boccia and hold a recreational tournament at the 2009 Adapted Sports Program Expo and later, a local group home for people with disabilities.

I love giving back to a sport system, no matter what country it is in, that has given me so much. Paralympians Darda Geiger, Jessica Matassa and Anjali Forber-Pratt were also invited by Windreach to demonstrate their respective sports of Swimming and Wheelchair Athletics.

Paralympians at Windreach in Bermuda

Local athletes competed in swimming, wheelchair racing, wheelchair archery, para-equestrian and boccia. It was an amazing experience, and I think we four international athletes came away quite inspired by the up and coming athletes of Bermuda, in whom we saw a little bit of ourselves.

The entire island loves sport, and especially Paralympic sport. I stayed after the Expo for a few days and was enjoying a weekly street festival full of Bermuda arts and food – many people recognised me from a profile in the local newspaper. A reporter from the Bermuda Sports Network who had been covering the Expo recognized me too, and we did this interview on the spot:

This event combined my passion for sport, empowering people with disabilities, and international co-operation. I also made many great new friends from across the world.

A success, I would say.