Keen skier and Cadent employee Sinead Furber has been volunteering with the Special Olympics West Midlands Ski Group for nearly five years, having first taken up a volunteering opportunity with them while working for a previous employer.
Sinead, who is a Health and Wellbeing Manager for Cadent, initially got involved as the role seemed like both an opportunity to share her passion for skiing and to give a little something back.
Members of the group have a variety of conditions including Autism and Down’s Syndrome and the group provides a means for them to display their wide range of sporting talents along with qualities including courage, determination, compassion and supporting and caring for others.
Sinead’s first role involved supporting the athletes at a competition in the French Alps and within hours of meeting the athletes, coaches, officials and other volunteers, she was hooked.
Each year the team of over 30 athletes, aged between 10 and 55, compete at regional events over the summer and they host their own competition in October every year. Like the standard Olympics every four years there is a World Winter Games which should have been taking place in Norway next year, in preparation for this and as part of the selection process they held the National Winter Games in Crans-Montana, Switzerland in January where the West Midlands athletes won 45 medals along with many more participation ribbons.
Sinead said: “ I’ve been bowled over by the incredible attitude and abilities of the athletes.
“The Special Olympics oath is ‘ Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in my attempt’ - what a great mantra for us all to adopt!”
She reflected: “Volunteering for the West Midlands Ski Group is one of the best things I’ve ever done, and it’s helped transform my life and my own sense of wellbeing.
“My family were becoming more independent and I realised that I needed to nurture others. The West Midlands Ski Group has fulfilled that need in me and they’ve become like a second family.”
Thank you, Sinead, for giving your time and skills to such a worthy organisation.
#VolunteersWeek20 and https://www.specialolympicsgb.org.uk/