Bradford City Football Club is pleased to support the 2017 Level Playing Field (LPF) Weeks of Action. This annual initiative, now in its 12th year, aims to celebrate access and inclusion for disabled sports fans across England and Wales.
This period of celebration and awareness began this Saturday (4 March 2017) and runs through to Sunday 19 March.
Disabled people constitute the largest minority group at around 15% of the population and this number is increasing year on year.
Naturally, a large number of disabled people are football fans too and we are pleased to take this opportunity to thank our own disabled fans for their continued loyalty and dedication to this great club.
This year we are celebrating the ‘Game Changers’ that make a big difference to the match day experience of our disabled fans. We want to shine a light on those who lead and pioneer change that improves access and inclusion, and in many cases changing the lives of disabled people.
Bradford City has many active disabled supporters and #gamechangers, and www.bradfordcityfc.co.uk will highlight the activities they do within the community.
Luke (pictured) is the latest #GameChanger, he is just like any other sport mad 24 year old playing football and rugby except as he has Cerebral Palsy he has to participate in specially adapted wheelchairs.
As a disabled supporter, Luke got involved with the Community Foundation volunteer group and was keen to explore the chance of a role at the club as a Steward.
A three-match trial was organised by City's Facilities Manager David Dowse and Disability Liaison Officer Jaimie Dorward.
The trial was to allow Luke an opportunity to ensure the job was for him. The period would also help to ensure the club could meet his accessibility requirements and make the reasonable adjustments to enable him to work in his role.
Three trial games later, he was hired on the spot and signed up to do the relevant qualifications for his role.
Luke is described by his co-workers as a pleasure to be around and someone who is always laughing and embracing his role and life to the full.
He is not stopping at stewarding and has future plans to participate in an accessible education course being run at the club for our volunteers to complete their FA Level 1 Football coaching certificate.
Luke was also awarded the Bradford Bulls Foundation Volunteer of the Year Award for Wheelchair Rugby this season further showing his commitment and contribution to sporting activities.
Well done Luke on being a #GameChanger and for bringing your unique sense of humour and poor jokes to the stadium!