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Accessible Tennis CIC net new racquets for community projects
Tennis Scotland rallied to support Accessible Tennis CIC recently by serving up a number of brand-new racquets which will aid the organisation’s outstanding community work.
Winners of Tennis Scotland’s 2018 Disability Award, Accessible Tennis CIC is a social enterprise which supports the health, fitness and wellbeing of underrepresented groups within communities through the provision of inclusive tennis coaching.
Progressing Tennis Skills
The new racquets have since been gifted as a reward to the thrilled members of an adult learning difficulties group who completed a six-week course at Lanark Tennis club; one of the organisation’s many community projects. Several of the participants had been attending Accessible Tennis sessions for over a year and were overjoyed at the prospect of finally holding their very own racquet. The lucky aces were also presented with balloons which will allow them to progress their tennis skills at home throughout the winter months.
Lanark Tennis Club’s committee said: "We welcomed players from Accessible Tennis for the second year running, with coaching sessions played during August and September. This is a fantastic group which is well attended with dates already in the diary for next year! A big thanks to Marie and her players for participating and being part of Lanark Tennis Club."
Pursuing Options Within Disability Coaching
One member of the adult learning disabilities group will certainly be putting his racquet to good use as he has been inspired to sidestep onto the coaching pathway. Having already completed a tennis activator workshop, he hopes to act as a role model for individuals of similar abilities by completing the Level 1 course and pursuing opportunities within disability coaching in the near future.
Through attaining Level 1 certification, he would be following in the footsteps of other aspirational coaches who have been motivated by Accessible Tennis sessions. An extensive partnership with local charity, Phoenix Futures, has provided great focus for individuals overcoming drug and alcohol problems. Since the beginning of the partnership, three members of Phoenix Futures have successfully completed the Level 1 course. Member of the class of 2020, Tommy, also has the desire to move up the coaching ladder. He commented, “I really enjoyed starting with Accessible Tennis and I’m looking forward to taking my involvement to the next stage.”
Marie Burns, Founder of Accessible Tennis CIC, said: “Many activities for people with learning difficulties, and for those in recovery, are not taking place at present due to COVID-19. Fortunately, tennis is one of the few sports running as physical activity is important for good mental health. Accessible Tennis managed to run sessions at Lanark Tennis Club and has kept tennis progressing for Phoenix Futures in Glasgow. More resources are needed to keep this vital work going. If you would like to help, please consider becoming a supporter.”
Engaging Individuals Recovering From Mental Health Issues
Following recent research which linked tennis to positive self-confidence, Tennis Scotland has committed to working alongside Accessible Tennis to support a project which engages individuals who are recovering from mental health issues.
To help fund community projects ran by Accessible Tennis CIC, you can make a donation here.
(Left – one lucky member of the adult learning difficulties group shows off her new racquet. Right - Accessible Tennis and Phoenix Futures at the Murray Trophy in 2019.)
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