Jessica lives with Type 1 diabetes, a serious condition in which a person’s blood glucose (sugar) level is too high because their body cannot make insulin. This means they have to monitor their exercise, food and glucose levels and administer insulin accordingly.
Tanya, Jessica’s mum, had initially struggled to book adventurous activities for Jessica as her medical requirements can make participation challenging.
However, last year, Jessica and Tanya were able to enjoy rock climbing here at the Centre for the first time due to both ours, and the Making Waves Together Project’s, initial learning and understanding of Jessica’s diabetes and then our adaptability of the activity so Jessica could join in. This very first experience of climbing was combined with mindfulness activities in which mother and daughter practiced skills and techniques that could be used alongside the climbing activity but also in their everyday lives.
Tanya commented: “The mindfulness climbing has changed our lives around – both of us now use the mindfulness exercises in our everyday lives and Jessica is engaging positively at school”
Since discovering that we were able to adapt climbing for Jessica, she has been able to take part in more activity sessions including participating in the Fit and Fed programme. This has given her the chance to experience watersports such as kayaking, which, well we think the smile says it all as to how much she enjoyed it! Our instructors also commented on her enthusiasm and evident delight at being able to get out on the water and take part.
Fit and Fed is part of national campaign organised locally by Plymouth City Council Sports Development unit where young people on free school meals can enjoy adventures here at the Centre and either start or end their session with a delicious packed lunch courtesy of CaterEd – Jessica very much enjoyed her gluten free lunch giving her lots of energy before her kayaking session!
“I’m so grateful to both the Mount Batten Centre and the Making Waves Together project for breaking down barriers to participation and enabling my daughter to enjoy the many physical and emotional benefits of engagement in adventurous activities – thank you!”