ParaCheer is a new division of the sport of Cheerleading that is currently in development, with the assistance of the International Cheerleading Union. ParaCheer involves mixed teams of disabled and non-disabled athletes, working together to create a routine that incorporates most of the elements of a current cheerleading routine – jumps, dance, stunts and tumbling.
The benefits of ParaCheer are significant - have a look at https://paracheer.org/benefits-of-paracheer/ - for a very long & real list.
I love it, and am honoured to have been chosen to represent England at the ICU World Cheerleading Championships in Orlando : Team England ParaCheer - the first integrated national team of disabled and non-disabled cheerleading athletes - is set to compete in the FIRST EVER competitive ParaCheer division at the Cheerleading World Championships in Orlando, Florida, USA in April 2017.
That's me, in the wheelchair...it's not a grimace, it's a smile!
On the only downside - costs are significant - travel plus insurance is higher for the disabled than non disabled and I need a specialist wheelchair.
HOW I WILL SPEND THE MONEY
If I make the all-or-nothing £1500 target, I'll put it towards wheelchair costs. I've been testing wheelchairs and think that I've found one strong and adaptable enough to use for the competition. The wheelchair I am after will be also invaluable at home, providing me with increased mobility both in and outside. It will enable me to better keep up with my two children!
If I hit the stretch target I will (after skipping the merry Dance of Delight) use it to pay for travel and insurance and donate the remainder to ParaCheer International to help others join the sport.
Here's more detail on the selected team: https://paracheer.org/2016/10/03/announcing-team-england-paracheer-2017-worlds-teams
We've already started practicing every fortnight in Coventry and it's a complete blast.
Thanks so much for your support!
More detail on the rewards...
What's a jamberry nail wrap you may ask. Here's a picture of the ones I have designed for ParaCheer. They simply wrap around your finger nail and you should have the lovely look in place for a fortnight.