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Creating an inclusive culture through disability sport

Creating an inclusive culture through disability sport

Scottish Student Sport's latest BiteSSSize webinar series focussed on how we can better embed disability sport into our universities, colleges and Scottish sport in general.

Our latest webinar, in the ever-popular BiteSSSize Best Practice webinar series, focussed on the principle of better embedding disability sport into universities, colleges and Scottish sport on the whole.

We were joined by Alison Shaw and Andrew MacKenzie from Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) who delivered a fantastic presentation on the partnership work between SDS and SSS. They were joined by para-swimmer and current UWS student Erin Swann who gave a student-athlete perspective.

High on the agenda was the importance of collaboration, not just between SSS and SDS, but the importance of institutional collaboration with SDS. This collaboration has allowed for university and college sports clubs to gain access to training and equipment to use to make their sports inclusive to students with disabilities.

Multiple governing body development staff were in attendance, including representatives from Cricket Scotland, Tennis Scotland and Scottish Archery who shared their own best practice of adapting their sports to accommodate disabilities.

From the call, we learned a number of important elements required to create a more inclusive culture in student sport. These included:

  • Make sure para-athletes are visible in branding/imagery on campus and on social media so students with disabilities feel more welcome
  • Create opportunities for students to participate and try out new sports/ parasports
  • Build links with community clubs to facilitate smooth transitions for athletes going from youth sport into student sport

The success of Disability Inclusion Forums was also highlighted in the webinar. These forums play a vital role in bringing together different departments within an institution. This can often include student services, sports unions and facilities managers and creates a more collaborative approach to improving access to sports.

SDS works with a number of institutions to deliver training to staff and students. This includes UK Disability Inclusion Training (UK DIT) and organisations interested in learning more should contact their regional lead from SDS.

Huge thanks to our panelists Alison Shaw, Andrew MacKenzie and Erin Swann for sharing their insights and to all the attendees who joined the call and contributed questions and comments throughout!

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Thursday, February 11, 2021 - 09:13

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