Sign Up for Our June 1st Webinar on Community-Based Programming

As part of our ongoing series, BlazeSports invites you to sign up for our June 1st webinar titled “How to Build Disability Sport and Physical Activity Programs in Your Community.” Under the guidance of Jeff Jones, our Director of Sports & Community Programs, and Dan Humphreys, Director of BlazeTEC, participants will learn about the skills and resources needed to design, develop, and launch successful programs that enhance opportunities for their neighbors with disabilities to live healthy, active lives. All participants will receive a copy of the BlazeSports Active for Life Guide and Toolkit. To help link theory with practice, Mike Boone, the Director of Adaptive Sports Iowa, will explain how he used the Toolkit to launch a successful community sports organization.

The webinar will be held this Wednesday from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m EDT. Space is limited, so register now by clicking here.

Posted in Blog |

You Can Help BlazeSports Help Haiti

A SOHaMO family’s tent in Cité Soleil, the most notorious neighborhood in Port-au-Prince.

This Saturday, a BlazeSports delegation will touch down at Toussaint Louverture International Airport in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Since the devastating earthquake struck the island nation in January 2010, BlazeSports has worked closely with the Haitian National Paralympic Committee and Ministry of Sport to establish five sports clubs and to aid the country’s disability community. At the most recent count, we are currently serving 634 Haitian children and adults with disabilities and their families. In our visit next week, BlazeSports staff and a multi-national group of experts and professionals will be teaching, training, providing care, hosting a girls’ soccer clinic, and supplying our clubs to the best of our ability.

You can help us do so.

Our friends at SOHaMO (Society of Handicapped and Aged) are in particular need. SOHaMO, now officially a BlazeSports club, is a community-organized association founded by and for the elderly and those with disabilities in Cité Soleil, a Port-au-Prince neighborhood recognized by the United Nations as the most dangerous in the world. As the situation in Cité Soleil worsened after the quake, the bonds of SOHaMO strengthened. These remarkable individuals built their own tent city, stood up to the armed gangs, and cared for not only their own members, but also street children and young people with disabilities who have been abandoned by their families.

You can help us help SOHaMO either by donating to BlazeSports, or by contributing any of the following items specifically requested by SOHaMO:

  • New children’s clothing
  • Educational toys
  • Paper
  • Soap
  • Toilet paper
  • Crutches
  • Sports equipment (please check with us regarding which items are most in need)
  • Hygiene kits
  • Wound care supplies
  • Flashlights (with 100,000 hours of light)
  • Art supplies (pastels, street chalk, watercolors, sketch pads, etc.)
  • Harmonicas
  • Talcum powder

If you choose to donate items, please be sure that they get to the BlazeSports office by Thursday. And if you have any questions feel free to contact us at 404-270-2000.

When you’re grilling burgers or hitting the beach this Memorial Day weekend, please think for a moment of those in Haiti for whom each day is a struggle to survive. We here in the U.S. are tremendously lucky, and it is our obligation to offer a hand to those fate has placed in the world’s more troubled corners. None of us can do everything, but together, we can certainly do something.

Posted in Blog |

Physical Fitness and Sports Month Draws to a Close

Image courtesy of Medical Zone.

There are only a few days left in May, but it’s not too late to get outside and celebrate Physical Fitness and Sports Month. Organized by the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition, the month was inaugurated by a proclamation from President Barack Obama that calls on the country to “rededicate ourselves to educating, engaging, and empowering Americans of all backgrounds and abilities to live a healthy lifestyle.”

This commitment is especially important for Americans with disabilities, who face higher rates of overweight and obesity and fewer opportunities for sport and recreation. It is a core mission of BlazeSports to help erase this gap. Through our programming, educational offerings, and policy initiatives, we work to ensure that individuals with disabilities have the same opportunities for physical activity as their friends and neighbors without disabilities. May is almost over, but for BlazeSports, healthy lifestyles are a twelve-month project.

That said, it’s not too late to heed President Obama’s call and commemorate Physical Fitness and Sports Month. Take a walk in the park this weekend. Shoot hoops with a friend.  Get involved at BlazeSports as an athlete, coach, or volunteer. Donate online and help us make full, healthy lives accessible to everyone, with or without a disability. But most of all, find some time to log off the computer, get outside, and get active.

Have a great Memorial Day weekend, everyone!

Posted in Blog |

Welcome to BlazeSports America’s new and improved blog!

As you may have noticed, BlazeSports has been busy renewing its commitment to new media. In addition to our active Twitter feed and Facebook account, we’ve given the main website a complete overhaul that both enhances usability and adds features (my favorite might just be the Blaze Hoops Challenge game). And now we are pleased to add this blog to our digital arsenal of communications tools.

BlazeSports has experimented with blogging in the past, but our posts were limited to the coverage of specific events like the 2010 Paralympic Games in Vancouver and staff trips to Haiti. This incarnation of the blog represents a commitment to sustained and consistent communication with our friends, constituents, and the world at large. I will be posting several times a week to make sure that you have access to the latest information regarding BlazeSports programs and projects, as well as more general news related to disability sport and disability rights.

We’re very excited about blogging’s potential to strengthen our staff’s connection to the greater BlazeSports family and to function as a valuable tool for the communities we serve. So be sure to check back soon. Updates will be coming fast and furious in the coming weeks and months, and we’re quite confident that you’re not going to want to miss a post.

Posted in Blog |