Ability First Sports is an organization that is committed to enhancing the quality of life for youth with physical disabilities through competitive athletics and recreational programming. They conduct a wheelchair sports camp designed to provide instructional and recreational sports opportunities to youth with physical disabilities.
Their sports range from beginner through both the junior and national levels of athletic competition and include sports such as basketball, adaptive aquatics, cycling, quad rugby, rock climbing, soccer, tennis, track and field, and water skiing. This organization is committed and constantly evolving and searching for new ways to benefit the youth with disabilities community in not only our county, but also the surrounding areas.
What an amazing organization! Ability First Sports works with Chico State to give students the opportunity to gain valuable experience within their fields of study. This type of a summer camp benefits people form all walks of life in our community and we want to see more of this type of work in the future.
Chuck Nadeau is a Camp Director for Ability First Sports and is also the President of EveryBody Healthy Body. EBHB is working to promote Ability First Sports, and organizations similar to it, to try and make these camps a more regular event in our community. The problem that Chuck brought forth at the November 2nd meeting between EBHB and CARD, was that Ability First Sports lacks the facilities to put on these events and are paid to go to other counties and regions to put them on.
Chuck’s vision is to implement the appropriate facilities into EBHB’s regional sports and active lifestyle complex so that we can hold these events here in Chico, benefiting not only our community but also our economy. An example he used in the meeting was having 4-foot wide doors in all of our facilities instead of 2-foot doors, so the individuals in wheelchairs didn’t have to take their wheels off to get into the buildings.
These small but meaningful aspects of EBHB’s vision are essential to insure that EBHB caters to everyone in our community. The Complex will be a central place in the community where everyone is welcome, and will provide specific facilities aimed to meeting the specific needs of our citizens. With the construction of a regional and active lifestyle sports complex here in Chico, we could potentially have a base camp for events like this to occur on a more regular basis. Together as a community, we can make this vision a reality!