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6th Dec, 2021

Jack's on the ball now thanks to Powerchair Football backing

Ross Crawford 22nd Nov, 2021

AN 11-year old boy who lives with a progressive muscle-wasting condition is calling for greater sport inclusivity for disabled children.

Jack Gauder from Solihull lives with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

This very rare condition causes muscles to weaken and waste over time, leading to increasing and severe disability.

Those living with DMD will eventually lose the ability to walk and Jack now requires permanent use of an electric wheelchair as well as daily help with his personal care.

He’d been desperate to take part in sport and earlier this year started playing Powerchair Football for the West Bromwich Albion Baggies.

Jack’s parents Emma and Matt said the change in their son’s mood since he started playing the game is remarkable.

“Jack always gave all sports a go, but he’d get really upset when he couldn’t do exactly what his friends and family were doing and it really affected him,” they said.

“We couldn’t believe how happy Jack was after he played his first game of Powerchair Football.

“He realised that he could play football just like other boys his own age by being part of a team and having fun.”

Powerchair Football is unique in that it allows people of all ages, disabilities and genders to play together, and it’s the only active team participation sport for people who use electric wheelchairs.

As of October 2021 there are 100 affiliated Powerchair Football teams within 40 clubs across England, with around 400 players.

The WFA currently oversees eight competitions; including the Muscular Dystrophy UK National League Premiership and Championship, six regional leagues, and the WFA cup.

Muscular Dystrophy UK sponsors both the Premiership and the Championship leagues in the UK.

Robert Burley, director of care at Muscular Dystrophy UK, said: “We’re really proud to sponsor the Premiership and Championship Powerchair Football leagues in England.

“It’s a brilliant sport and makes such a difference to people’s lives. Muscular Dystrophy UK feels passionately that all disabled people have the right to play and enjoy sport in an accessible way.”

For more information, visit https://www.musculardystrophyuk.org/

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