Sports Activities for Youth with Disabilities

Sports Activities for Youth with Disabilities is a unique recreational program designed so that children with any type of disability can participate in sports, particularly if their disability makes it difficult for them to join other mainstream group programs.

Queen Anne’s County Parks and Recreation is offering this eight-week program which has been organized by Lee Marks, a member of the department’s board of directors and an avid sports-dad. The Sports Activities for Youth with Disabilities program will be held at Kent Island Elementary School’s gym, from 6 – 8 p.m. on Thursdays beginning January 7, 2010.

“The goal of this program is to provide youth with disabilities the opportunity to participate at whatever level they are able to in a sports related activity that they are interested in. They will also have the opportunity to make new friends and socialize with others in the community,” Marks said. He sees the program as one which will evolve with the needs of the participants and their families.

“An open gym format will be used to provide various sports related activities,” said Marks. “The activities will be tailored as needed to meet the interest and ability level of the individual participant. The kids can learn basic skills and participate at various levels of play based on their ability level. They may do this on an individual basis or with others as a small group.”

Some of the primary sports that activities may be planned around are basketball, baseball, soccer, lacrosse, hockey, volleyball, bowling, kickball. Other sports and activities may be considered based on the participants’ interests, he said.

Instruction and assistance will be provided by adult and youth volunteers involved in the sports community. The program will be a “working program” since it is new and activities will need to be planned and structured based on the youth that will be participating. A parent or guardian is required to attend and may help or participate as needed. For information or to register, call QAC Recreation Manager Joan Brooks at 410-758-0835 ext. 2525, email jbrooks@qac.org, or go to the department’s website www.parksnrec.org.

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