We’re delighted to introduce Simon Heaps, who has kindly agreed to be our first Bader Grant Recipient of the Month in 2020.
At 64, Simon’s ambition is to become the best Wheelchair Amputee Table Tennis player in the world and, as you will see, he has already taken very positive steps towards that goal. He shares the beginning of this journey below and has promised to update us following the forthcoming World Games.
We are proud to have been able to help Simon towards reaching his goal. I think you’ll agree that he epitomises the Bader spirit and the reason that the DBF came into being following the death of Sir Douglas in the first place. We received hundreds of requests to keep that spirit of inspiration and support alive and we know that Douglas, who was a pretty mean table tennis player himself, would be supporting Simon wholeheartedly.
When I knew that to achieve my dream I would need considerable funds to pay for specialist coaching, entries, accommodation and travel because all of the events that I am currently playing in have to be self funded, I knew that Charitable Organisations like The Douglas Bader Foundation would be necessary. I was knocked back by many with excuses such as, we don’t support individuals only charities, our funding has expired, we only support young sportspeople etc etc. I took that on the chin and alongside my own fundraising I continued to send off applications .The Foundation were so helpful in their funding and had the confidence and support to help me “ on my way “. I am so grateful. I am sure that Douglas Bader himself would have approved of my positive attitude in trying to make dream a reality. I am only in the beginning of this road, although it will be uphill all the way I will relish the challenges ahead.
Just an update upon my return from Costa Rica in December where I made my GB debut in Wheelchair Table Tennis at the age of 64. I am now going to become GB’s sole representative in the IWAS (International Wheelchair Amputee Sports Federation ) World Games in Thailand from 20th to 28th February. There are 12 different sports whereby 500 athletes from around the world compete for medals. My quest is to become the best Wheelchair Amputee TT player in the World.
We will look forward to hearing how Simon gets on in the World Games and, of course, wish him the very best of luck and success over in Thailand.
Simon is totally self-funding and, as explained, the costs of financing a goal of this kind are high. He has a Go Fund Me page and would be very grateful for any support towards helping him to achieve his goal. If you’d like to donate, please follow the link below. Any donation will be very welcome.
Please note that since this post was published, Simon Heaps has heard that due to the current outbreak of Coronavirus, the World Games have now been postponed until 2nd – 9th April.Tags: IWAS, Simon Heaps, Wheelchair Table Tennis, World Games