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Sports & Rec: PVA Racing Mentors Youth


PVA Racing Team spent Oct. 10 helping and mentoring 
children and young adults with disabilities in the first Junior Para-Cycling Clinic in Glen Dale, Md. Photo courtesy Jody Shiflett
Reprinted from PN/Paraplegia News December 2015

Paralyzed Veterans of America’s (PVA) Racing Team members spent a day helping and mentoring 
children and young adults with disabilities

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More than 50 people attended the first Junior Para-Cycling Clinic in October in Glen Dale, Md. Photo courtesy Jody Shiflett.

Before competing in October’s Army Ten-Miler in Washington, D.C., Paralyzed Veterans of America’s (PVA) Racing Team members spent a day helping and mentoring 
children and young adults with disabilities.

Fifteen PVA Racing Team members participated in the first Junior Para-Cycling Clinic on Oct. 10 in Glenn Dale, Md., offering children with physical disabilities from the Mid-Atlantic region an opportunity to interact on their handcycles and recumbent trikes.

“The weather prevailed, no one was hurt and everyone was excited and happy for the day,” says Jody Shiflett, adaptive cycling program consultant for PVA.
The event drew more than 50 people, including around 20 children and young adults with disabilities , parents, staff and volunteers. Under the guidance of experienced athlete mentors, participants learned cycling rules, safety and skills, after which they participated in a trail ride with family and friends.

“Some of the kids were interested in the sport to recreate, while others were interested in competing,” Shiflett says. “All but one of the kids had a bike, but even those who had one were either outgrowing it or using a hand-me-down.”

Para-cycling promotes a fun and active everyday lifestyle to children with physical disabilities and helps foster important life skills such as independence, confidence and sportsmanship.
The Minnesota-based Carlson Family Foundation underwrote the event, providing staff travel and facilities, and purchasing two handcycles to donate to the MedStar Washington Hospital Center.

“The donation of these program bikes will hopefully open up the sport to more youths,” Shiflett says.

 

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Sports & Rec: PVA Racing Mentors Youth

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