Category: Community

Heroes of CP: Ellie Simpson – Part 3/3 (CP Teens UK)

This is the third and final installment of the interview we did with Ellie Simpson for our Heroes of CP video series. In this part of the interview Ellie focuses on what motivated her to set up CP Teens UK, how people have engaged and can engage with the organization, and how big the CP Teens UK community has become.

Click here for part 1 of Ellie’s interview ‘Road to RaceRunning’

Click here for part 2 of Ellie’s interview ‘Life, CP, and University’

My stand out moments

  • Ellie’s positive response to social isolation, setting up an organization that would solve her problem, and the problem of “thousands of teenagers up and down the UK”
  • Ellie’s proactive desire to reach more people, through tiny tots and “expanding our social events”
  • Ellie’s clear vision and direction for the future of CP Teens UK
  • The high value placed on community by CP Teens UK members “it’s a great great night, it’s a great social opportunity

Ellie is a duel CPISRA World Games gold medalist, and the founder of CP Teens UK, an increasingly successful non-profit organization helping teenagers & young people with Cerebral Palsy and similar disabilities.

CP Teens UK: http://www.cpteensuk.org/

2015 CPISRA World Games: http://www.cpsport.org/news/cpisra-world-games/

The transcript of Ellie’s interview is below

I run CP Teens UK, which is a charity for people, like myself, with cerebral palsy, or similar brain injuries. I set it up in my gap year when I left school because I felt really socially isolated. I left school and my friends just didn’t want to know me. So I thought well surely it’s not only me who feels like this, and it wasn’t. It was thousands of teenagers up and down the UK, and today CP Teens is massive. It’s just about to become a company and a charity.

Who are you most trying to reach at CP Teens?

Young people definitely. But it’s for anyone of any age really; who’s just feeling a bit out of it, a bit left out, not sure what to do, needs some guidance…

It’s for people with physical disabilities, but obviously the focus is on cerebral palsy, because that’s what I have and that’s where the idea came from.

If they go onto www.cpteensuk.org they’ll find lots of information, including contact information on how to get involved and we have loads of things in Sheffield going on like the RaceRunning club which is great fun.

We have a tiny tots club in Chesterfield on a Tuesday night and we are expanding our social events around the area.

We have a charity ball every year and we have a celebrity guest every year and it’s a great great night, it’s a great social opportunity, and it raises lots of money for the charity.

What was the last celebrity you had?

We had Sophie Christiansen, OBE and Paralympic Champion.

 

If you would like to stay updated with our progress, please sign up to our mailing list in the sign-up form below

 

If you would like to take part in a Heroes of CP interview and be featured on our blog, get in touch with us at hello@exyo.co.uk or in the comments section below.

Heroes of CP: Ellie Simpson – Part 2/3 (Life, CP, and University)

In this, the second part of our Heroes of CP interview with Ellie Simpson, (follow this link for the first part http://bit.ly/2aFj8gy)  Ellie talks about the way in which cerebral palsy affects her life, her fears leaving home and going to university, and how she approaches the challenges in her life.

What stood out to me about this part of the interview was:

  • Ellie’s ability to ask for help when she needs it
  • The strength and the confidence she draws from her community
  • Ellie’s willingness to try new things that are daunting, accepting failure as a reality of trying
  • Ellie’s grit and strength of character to continue trying until she finds a way

Ellie is a duel CPISRA World Games gold medalist, and the founder of CP Teens UK, an increasingly successful non-profit organization helping teenagers & young people with Cerebral Palsy and similar disabilities.

CP Teens UK: http://www.cpteensuk.org/

2015 CPISRA World Games: http://www.cpsport.org/news/cpisra-world-games/

The transcript of Ellie’s interview is below

How does cerebral palsy affect your life?

It affects my walking and my co-ordination, so I can’t do things like, pour drinks, or cut up food, or handle money. Things like that, like, everyday things really.

How do you overcome those things?

I ask other people to help me out a bit where needed.

I think if you have support around you, you’re more likely to go out and do different things, and have the confidence to do different things.

I applied for a sport degree at University and I would have never done that before I had that network around me

I wasn’t going to go, I was terrified of going, even up until the night before, I was like, I’m not going, I’m not going, and my mum dropped me off on my first day, and she was like, just go on, you don’t have to go back tomorrow. I was terrified, but I gave it a go, and it’s the best thing I have ever done.

I think I was scared of doing a sports degree, I thought people would think, why is she doing a sports degree? And I was scared about making friends, being in a new environment, and yeah it was quite a daunting process

How did you address each of those fears?

Well first of all I told myself I was being stupid, and I just went and decided to give it a shot, and it all kind of fell in to place.

I would say… I don’t know how to put it… Always step out of your comfort zone, because that’s where your life begins really.

Is there any way your life is richer because of cerebral palsy?

Yes, definitely, I think I would have just gone on in life having things my own way all the time, and actually not realizing that everything can’t go your own way all the time.

I think it’s made me, I don’t know how to say it really, I think as a teenager, teenagers are self-centered and it’s all about them, but I think it’s made me realize that it’s not all about me, and that there are other ways to do things, even if you can’t do it in the way it’s meant to be done.

Even the small things are more like, yay.

 

If you would like to stay updated with our progress, please sign up to our mailing list in the sign-up form below

 

If you would like to take part in a Heroes of CP interview and be featured on our blog, get in touch with us at hello@exyo.co.uk or in the comments section below.

Sport – the second greatest medicine.

I love sport. I cannot actually get enough of it. Playing it, watching it, more recently coaching it and of course, bbcsporting it. And right now we’re in the middle of wall to wall sport with the olympics & paralympics in Rio! Oooh lovely stuff! I struggle to imagine a world without it. The great philosopher of our time (well,… Read more →

Heroes of CP: Ellie Simpson – Part 1/3 (Road to RaceRunning)

We were extremely excited to kick off our Heroes of CP interview series with Ellie Simpson. She is such an inspiring person. Not only did she manage to win two gold medals at the CPISRA World Games, but she is also the founder of CP Teens UK, an increasingly successful non-profit organization helping teenagers & young people with Cerebral Palsy and similar disabilities.

CP Teens UK: http://www.cpteensuk.org/

2015 CPISRA World Games: http://www.cpsport.org/news/cpisra-world-games/

Whilst conducting this part of the interview, the things that I was particularly struck by about Ellie’s message were;

  • the importance of community for motivation and successfully achieving her goals,
  • the potentially damaging misconceptions that she has been exposed to and how she rose above them,
  • and her enduring memories from the moments after she won her gold medals.

Ellie says it best herself though, so watch the video above.

The transcript is below.

I’m Ellie Simpson, I’m 21 years old, and I go to Sheffield Hallam. I am a race runner for England

I race run because I really like the feel of it. I can’t run normally, and I can’t race with wheelchairs because my hands don’t work properly, so race running gives me opportunity to run on the track.

A few years ago I didn’t do any exercise at all, and when I discovered the Paralympics I thought it would be a good thing to get into.

I thought there would be a social side to it because I saw on the TV at the Paralympics that team GB all seemed to really support one another and get on with one another, and I thought, I want a bit of that action.

At the World Games last year I was part of team England, and there was a massive team spirit, and I managed to win gold in two of my races. When I was coming up the home straight I could hear the rest of team England just going wild.

Like the noise in the stadium definitely spurred me on, because the other runner was just behind me, and I think without the crowd, I wouldn’t have powered on to win.

All through my childhood, it was like; you can’t do sport, sport’s not for you, you can do things elsewhere. I just accepted that, and then I watched the Paralympics, and I thought, hang on a minute, that’s not right. I told my Mum and Dad when they had some friends round that I would go and give it a go, and my Mum and Dad’s friends were like haha… no way, and I was like, no I’m gonna do it.

I think last year when I went to the World Games, it was the closing ceremony, and I’d won two golds, and three years before I was watching the Paralympics thinking, aah maybe one day. But I never thought it would actually happen, and I was sat in the closing ceremony with all my friends, and I was like, yeah… I did it.

 

If you would like to stay updated with our progress, please sign up to our mailing list in the sign-up form below

 

If you would like to take part in a Heroes of CP interview and be featured on our blog, get in touch with us at hello@exyo.co.uk or in the comments section below.

Get Involved! – with RaceRunning @ EIS Sheffield

“ It’s freeing… … amazing… “ it’s so beautiful on the track, fresh air…”, “you can switch off that part of your brain”, “ the experience of what walking must be like without cerebral palsy– using motor patterns which come naturally and easily”, “I’ve never been able to go really fast before!”, “I got hot!”, “It was his first experience… Read more →

Everybody and their mums has heard of Bailey Matthews

And with good reason! Bailey, who happens to have cerebral palsy, completed his first triathlon last year, throwing away his walking frame to complete the last 20 yards of the final running event on his own. HARDCORE 1 And There’s more: Last month, he created and ran this own, “Be More Bailey Triathlon” alongside Jenson Button’s event at Markeaton Park… Read more →

So We Need A Crowd!!!!

A CALL TO ACTION

“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.” – Charles Dickens.

We want exyo to be part of a useful community, and as part of that community we want you to feel useful. So with that in mind we have started as we mean to go on!

Ways in which you can lighten our burden… watch like and share our latest video, and subscribe to and share our mailing list.

Share this link (http://eepurl.com/bbQYET) its a sign up form! We want to talk to physios, users of posterior walkers e.g. people with cerebral palsy, and really anybody who might be interested. If NOBODY you know fits the bill, then share it with all of your friends anyway!!!

You have found us, but we want MORE!!! Don’t be a useless person. Spread the word and leave your email below.

Tentative First Steps…

A Shaky Start First let me introduce myself… I’m Andy… Hi… To be frank I have never written a blog before and I am unsure of precisely how to go about it, however we all must start somewhere and here is as good as place as any so far as I can tell. If you are reading this blog and… Read more →