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Vicky Rowe named regional winner in Olympic legacy sport award!

Winner Vicky Rowe

Vicky Rowe from St Austell, has been named the South West Sportivate Participant of the Year in recognition of their contribution and outstanding commitment to sport thanks to the Olympic and Paralympic legacy programme Sportivate.

Sportivate aims to give young people aged 11 to 25-year-olds who weren't playing sport previously, the opportunity to discover a new sport of their choice. Once the Sportivate sessions have been completed, the young people are then helped to find a club or venue where they can continue to take part in sport.

Having not played sport since she was much younger, Vicky completed introductory coaching sessions in Horse Riding, and is now taking part regularly, having joined the local centre Barguse Riding Centre.

Vicky's story: When Vicky first enrolled on the course, she was overweight, unfit & lacking self-confidence.
Despite being so young, she took on the role of full time carer to her husband who has cerebral palsy after his mother died.
She had ridden for a short period of time as a very young child but was unable to continue for various reasons.
With her self-esteem terribly low and realising that she was sinking into depression, she knew she had to take action and so she bravely contacted us. She was frightened we would turn her away because of her weight and how she would be perceived but we encouraged her to give it a go.
At the end of her first Sportivate session, she burst into tears because she loved it so much.
Over the course, she continued to flourish. Through funding from various organisations, she continues to ride and now has a carer in for her husband for one day a week so that she can volunteer around the yard here to give her some respite.
She has lost three stone in weight & her confidence & mental outlook is amazing.

Vicky Rowe said: "Thanks to the Sportivate sessions at Barguse I feel that I have my life back. I found the sessions were affordable, fitted my routine well as a carer for my husband and made me happier and healthier. I feel free of any worries when in the saddle!" I'm really honoured to have been named South West Participant of the Year and my next ambition is to help others in a similar situation".

Sportivate

Tim Marrion from the Cornwall Sports Partnership commented: "Sportivate is such an inspirational programme to get people active and it is great to see Vicky and the Barguse Riding Centre recognised for the hard work they have done. This has been a really successful project for us that demonstrates the power that sport can have to not only develop communities but also individuals. This regionals success enables us to still celebrate the legacy of London 2012 here in Cornwall where we retained over 1,000 young people in sport and physical activity in year 3 and to also hear how successful it has been to have a positive impact of Vicky's life truly demonstrates how much this programme is working.

Through attending the weekly coaching sessions, Vicky has learnt new skills, met new people and developed her confidence".

Sport England's Executive Director for Community Sport, Mike Diaper, said: "Sportivate is all about helping and supporting young people like Vicky who may have not thought sport was for them. I am delighted that Vicky has been recognised for his/her outstanding commitment and achievement in sport."

Vicky is one of over 420,000 young people who have attended Sportivate sessions and more than 350,000 have completed their coaching sessions.

Sportivate is being delivered by the network of 45 county sports partnerships, working with local clubs and providers. It is part of a £56 million Lottery funded Olympic legacy programme and will benefit hundreds of thousands of young people until 2017.

Are you a sports club and want to get people aged between 11 - 25 years old more active? Then contact Lewis Sanders at Cornwall Sports Partnership and see how Sportivate can help.  T: 01872 323335 or E: lesanders@cornwall.gov.uk