Achilles regular and committee member, Brian O'Dea, has been featured in a fantastic article by Settlement Services International (SSI). An exert of the the article is featured below and you can read the whole article here. It's fantastic for us to hear firsthand how the impact of regular exercise can change people's everyday life for the better.
"A vision-impaired runner will join the SSI team in City2Surf 2017 thanks to a connection his Ability Links linker made with the Achilles Running Club in Sydney.
Zhen Hua Lin, a participant in the Ability Links NSW (ALNSW) program, was told about running in the City2Surf by his linker, Li Hua Chu.
From early childhood, Mr Lin had always loved running but three years ago he went from being totally active to living in a nursing home after an allergic reaction to antibiotics rendered him blind.
He could no longer run and was reluctant to venture outside. His fitness deteriorated.
Concord Hospital case workers referred Mr Lin to ALNSW, a free program that SSI delivers to support people with disability. It is designed to help them plan for their future by building on their strengths and skills.
Ms Chu found a way to get Mr Lin out of his house and start training. She contacted the Achilles Running Club, which offers a supportive social environment for people with disabilities to achieve life changing goals through training and participation in running and walking events.
At Achilles she found Brian O'Dea, a volunteer who jumped at the challenge.
Mr O'Dea said Achilles sought to get people with disability to enjoy the benefits of exercise. “We exist for people like Mr Lin,” he said.
“This kind of exercise can be life changing. We’ve been delighted how by giving people the opportunity we can change things for them.”
After three years with no activity outside his house, Mr Lin is now getting exercise in the open air, training on Wednesdays and Saturdays."
On 1 April 2017, Achilles Sydney took on parkrun with members participating across a number of events.
We were featured in the local website In the Cove read the article here
You can also read more about the parkrun event on our news blog
Achilles Canberra runner, Liz, was featured in the Canberra Weekly print edition. See the article below.
Achilles Melbourne super runner Adam Koops had his story featured in an article on Perth Now covering his participation in Run For The Kids in 2017.
Read the article here
Achilles Melbourne president, Amanda Kwong, was awarded Volunteer of the Year at the 2016 Victorian Disability Sport and Recreation Awards. This is what Amanda had to say:
We are absolutely humbled to have received Initiative of the Year and Volunteer of the Year at the Disability Sport and Recreation awards. We would like to congratulate our co-nominees in joining us to create opportunities for people with a disability to participate in sports and recreation. This award is dedicated to the efforts of the extended Achilles family: Blind Sports & Recreation Victoria , @achilles_sydney, Achilles Canberra, our volunteers who are there week in, week out and especially our athletes with disability for making Achilles Melbourne a great club to run/walk/roll together! #goachilles
Achilles Melbourne was honoured to receive the VicHealth Outdoor/Active Recreation Iniative of the Year award for 2016. Amanda and Simon from Achilles Melbourne switched their sweat pants for suits and dresses for the awards ceremony where they received their well deserved trophy. Well done Melbourne #GoAchilles
Check out the awards video here.
Francois Jacobs is gearing up for the Melbourne Coast Trek, a 30 kilometre hike along the Mornington Peninsula to raise funds to restore sight to blind and vision impaired people in developing countries.
Read more at 9News.com
In the past two years, Adam Koops has started fitness classes, lost 40kg and taken up running. Last month, he finished a half-marathon and is training to do a full marathon in October. Read about his journey in this article from the Age.
Our mission is to enable people from all walks of life, including those with physical impairments, to enjoy the health giving benefits of walking and running in a supportive, social and encouraging environment.