Marking World Cerebral Palsy Day On 6 October
A 19-year-old para-dressage rider with cerebral palsy has spoken out about how she has overcome the difficulties of living with the condition to achieve her dream.
Izzy Palmer from Rawdon, Leeds, was diagnosed with cerebral palsy shortly after her birth. As a child Izzy took longer to learn certain motor skills such as using scissors or doing up buttons on clothes. Izzy also walked on her tip toes as a child and wore special Piedro boots. Despite these difficulties growing up Izzy was, and still is, very independent.
Despite the daily challenges she faces, Izzy discovered she had a passion for para-dressage during the London Paralympics in 2012. Since then, she has gone on to enjoy huge success in the sport and has represented Great Britain on numerous occasions.
As part of her riding commitment Izzy volunteers by doing appearances at charity events and she also helps to mentor and train younger riders.
She has been grade 4 national champion multiple times and has been ranked as high as 4th in the FEI world rankings.
Izzy is currently fund-raising as part of her bid to make it to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics and she is being supported by specialist lawyers at national firm Irwin Mitchell in her bid. With World Cerebral Palsy day on 6 October, Izzy has now joined with her legal team to share her successes and achievements.
Expert Opinion"Izzy is such an inspiration and shows that having a disability doesn’t need to stop you from following your dreams.
Of course she has to deal with the challenges posed by her condition, but she is determined not to let it stand in her way.
We have been supporting Izzy over the past few months in her fund-raising efforts to help her get to Tokyo and we would love to see her showcase her talents at the games.
In the meantime, with World Cerebral Palsy Day just around the corner, we thought it was the perfect opportunity to let Izzy share her story, and we encourage everyone to get behind her.”
Rachelle Mahapatra - Partner
Izzy was born on 27 September 2000. Following discharge from hospital after birth, a health visitor noted that Izzy’s hand was not functioning properly. She was referred to hospital for further investigation and diagnosed with cerebral palsy.
Izzy has recently completed her A-Levels at St Mary’s Menston Catholic Voluntary Academy where she was a student. Izzy’s mum has always been a lover of horses, however Izzy was first introduced to horses at a young age as her mum found them to be a great source of physiotherapy for Izzy.
Izzy said: “I love horses and it would be an absolute dream come true if I made it to Tokyo next year.
“I have had a busy year of competitions so far but I enjoy every minute of it, and with World Cerebral Palsy Day taking place this weekend, I hope that I can inspire others with the condition to lead an active and fulfilled life.”
For more information or to pledge your support to the campaign for Izzy, visit https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/izzypalmer.
World Cerebral Palsy (CP) Day is on Sunday, 6 October. The aim of the awareness raising day is to ensure that children and adults with cerebral palsy have the same rights, access and opportunities as anyone else in our society.
There are an estimated 30,000 children with cerebral palsy in the UK. It is often caused by injuries during birth and leaves those affected with varying conditions that affect muscle control and movement. They may also have learning difficulties, epilepsy and communication difficulties.
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