We are delighted to hear that our Activities Facilitator at our Opportunities Without Limits service in Sawston, Gail Williams, has been nominated for a Living Sport Virtual Sports award as part of their 2020 ceremony on 3 December.

The category Gail has been nominated for is the Matthew Warn Power of Sport Award, which is given in recognition to someone who has had a positive impact on those around them by demonstrating the power of sport and how it can improve physical and mental health and wellbeing, particularly whilst addressing the needs of under-represented groups in sport such as disabled people, people with long-term conditions, black, Asian and minority ethnic groups, low income groups, children and young people or adults aged 55 or over.

Here is Gail’s nomination story:

Gail Williams’ passion for supporting disabled people to enjoy and participate in football began when she was a carer for Hannah. They were Cambridge Utd season ticket holders, attending many games together. After Hannah died, Gail started working at Papworth Trust and continued Hannah’s legacy by setting up a Par-Ability Football team for adults with physical and learning disabilities. Before lockdown the team was 17 strong, with men and women taking part, and a wheelchair user holding the Assistant Manager position. The team has given people opportunities they never thought they would have.

Gail has worked hard through lockdown to keep in touch with players, visiting people at home for one to one coaching and posting coaching videos online for players who are shielding. Gail’s passion recently saw her organise a golf day, raising over £1,640 for equipment and trips for the team when they can all get back together.

Following news of her nomination, Gail said: “My nomination is overwhelming and it’s fantastic to get recognition. This will help no end in the future for the team! I also believe this may boost Sawston customer moral at this difficult time. I understand the nomination is for me, but all the service users have been involved right from the beginning!”

Voting is open now – you can vote for Gail here: www.livingsport.co.uk/public-vote

Deadline to vote is midnight on Sunday 25 October.