My sporting journey began at age eight when I was stopped by a wheelchair basketball club that was advertising in a local shopping park. I had my first try in a sports wheelchair and within ten minutes I’d been into the sporting goods shop and bought my first basketball, it was that day my passion for sport was born.
My athletic career took off quickly, when I was nine I became the youngest ever national player to represent a region in the UK and since then I have represented the Welsh junior squad every year. My passion for basketball and sport only grew from there and since then I have seized all opportunities offered to me which is what has enabled me to train and become a three time British champion, and a European Champion with GB u24s. I am now representing Cardiff Met Archers in the first female Premier League in the world, whilst being in the GB Academy and representing three (captaining two) of my local squads.
I have been in a wheelchair since birth, I was born with a neurological condition called spina bifida which occurs when the spinal cord is not able to fully develop during gestation. I consider myself very lucky to have never been hugely impacted by my condition, despite being in a wheelchair permanently and experiencing surgeries and daily pain, I still consider myself as able as anyone else and I have never let my condition come between me and any path to success.
I was always extremely happy with the amount of equal opportunities I received but this was only until I faced the obstacle of high school PE. It saddens me to say that I can’t remember a time where I had fun in a PE lesson or wasn’t excluded in some form, and that I considered it to be more of a barrier in my journey than an encouragement. After a few months of struggle I decided to give up (which isn’t something I do often). In my PE lessons I would never turn up to class, which didn’t even bother my teacher, instead I would find an empty classroom and do my homework. It was at this point that I decided I never wanted any other disabled student, or any student for that matter to have the same experiences as me when it came to PE.
I came across the Youth Sport Trust and not long after Sport Wales and within two months I was a part of both Youth Panels. I see this as the perfect opportunity for me to make a difference to PE for the long term and make sure all students can access and enjoy this crucial lesson. My main motivation is to make life easier for disabled students and all young people, I want an equal world where no one experiences discrimination and my message to anyone in my position or any similar position is when someone tells you, you can’t do something...simply question them: WHY NOT?