At Options, we believe that everyone should have new and enriching life experiences. We also recognise that one of the barriers the people we support experience, is not knowing what’s out there when it comes to trying new and enriching life experiences. For this reason, we increased the aspirational focus of everything we do and have set up an Aspirations Fund for the people we support.
Our Aspirations Fund is a pot of money set aside to enable the people we support to achieve something important to them and to help provide a range of different sessions and workshops which focus on trying new things.
Skiing is an amazing winter sport that attracts people from all walks of life. It’s a thrilling and enjoyable activity that offers a sense of adventure, excitement, and joy. However, for individuals with learning disabilities, skiing can be a daunting and challenging task.
With proper instruction and support, people with learning disabilities can enjoy skiing just like anyone else. In fact, skiing can be an excellent activity, as it offers various benefits, including improved physical health, increased self-esteem, and enhanced social skills.
One of the best ways to learn how to ski is through adaptive ski programs, which offer specialized instruction like visual cues, verbal prompts, and physical support as well as equipment designed to meet the unique needs of people with disabilities, such as specialized skis, bindings, outriggers, and sit-skis.
We have in the past held one-off ‘taster sessions’ for skiing, and it’s been popular with the people we support. We were asked by people we support, in the monthly forum we call Voices R Us, if it was possible to try skiing again. So that’s exactly what we did, and the outcomes were fantastic.
From the people who had been before, becoming more able and confident, to people coming to try it for the very first time, our Aspirations Fund enabled seven people we support to go along to the Chill Factore in Manchester for 8 weeks of skiing sessions.
The sessions were led by the team from Disability Snowsports UK who specialize in adaptive Snowsports for people with disabilities. Rory and Sam (Pictured) had never tried skiing before, but they were quick to get into the swing of it, thanks to the tailored support of Disability Snowsports’ instructors.
In the longer term our aspiration is to enable more skiing lessons to happen before heading away on a skiing holiday in 2024! We will of course keep you updated about all of our skiing adventures when they happen.
We want to say a huge thank you to Disability Snowsports and the Chill Factore for the best support and coaching and we also want to say a big well done to the people we support for getting out there and giving it a go!