20 children with profound physical disability who have never had the opportunity to take part in interschool sports will now be able to play Balloon Football, a specialized version of AFL created by Scope.

The children, who are aged 10-14, come from two specialist schools, Nepean School and Glenallen School and are excited to finally have the opportunity to play competitive sport.

Scope CEO Dr. Jennifer Fitzgerald says the Junior BFL competition was created to enable children with profound and complex disability to play sport.

“Interschool sport is an important experience that almost every Australian child participates in. Scope sought to create opportunities in sport for children with disability so they did not miss out on this essential experience,’ said Dr. Fitzgerald.

“There are structural and attitudinal barriers for people with disability in accessing sporting programs, which highlights the need for an inclusive and accessible program like BFL to exist.”

According to a 2011 report by the Australian Sports Commission, 75% of persons living with disability wished to participate more in sports and active recreation, and almost all respondents acknowledged barriers within their participation.

BFL is played on an indoor basketball court with players using powered or manual wheelchairs and walkers, and are supported by a valuable group of volunteers who assist the players by pushing them on court, umpiring and scoring the games.

BFL programs for primary and secondary schools are available through Scope. Please contact Scope on 1300 472673.

Where: Sportlink, 2 Hanover Road, Vermont South, 3133
When: March 29th2017, between 11am to 1pm.
Filming opportunities:
• Children aged 10-14 with profound disability playing a modified version of AFL on wheelchairs and walkers.
• Interviewing opportunities with the children/ players and Scope CEO Dr. Jennifer Fitzgerald.
• An AFLW women’s player is anticipated to attend, but Scope has not yet received confirmation of which player will be attending. The AFLW player will make a speech at the start of the Junior BFL tournament.

About Scope

Scope’s mission is to enable each person to live as an empowered and equal citizen.

We support people with physical, intellectual and multiple disabilities and developmental delays to achieve their goals.

Across Victoria, Scope provides services to over 6,000 people with a disability across more than 100 service locations.

Scope also works with corporate and community organisations to improve inclusiveness for people with a disability.

Scope’s foundations stretch back to 1948, when a group of parents who wanted better lives and options for their children with disabilities established the Spastic Children’s Society of Victoria.

Scope acknowledges the support of the Victorian Government.

For media enquires please contact:
Ai-Lin Chang
Media Relations Coordinator
T: 03 9843 2086
E: achang@scopeaust.org.au