Podcast Episode 17. Finding an interest as child, such as in sport, can lead to a lifelong passion that lasts right through adolescence and adulthood, and provides a strong connection to a community and a focus for life. This is the opinion of Maire who shares her story in this week’s podcast.

Maire talks about how a lack of confidence can lead to a young person to want to give up things they have always enjoyed. Combine that with a growing realisation that they are not performing at the same level as peers who seem to do the same things effortlessly, and the barriers to participation start to get higher.

Maire reminds us that it’s not always easy to manage the expectations of our children with additional needs or even what their siblings expect of them. For her son she looks to sport to help him find his purpose, build his confidence and find his own unique space in the world. As parents that’s our greatest challenge.

Show Notes
[.40] – All about Maire and her son
[1.15] – His primary school journey and finding the right secondary school
[1.40] – Learning life skills
[2.30] – Building confidence over time and with the right support
[3.30] – Making friends isn’t easy
[4.00] – Small slow steps
[4.30] – The challenges of having a younger sibling
[5.30] – When lack of confidence leads to giving up
[7.00] – Sport is the way forward
[7.30] – Stuck in the middle
[8.20 – Mainstream sport not inclusive
[9.00] – Cycling skills
[10.45] – Finding a purpose to build the feeling of success
[12.00] – The future and independent living
[12.30] – Healthy living
[12.45] – The difference boarding has made
[14.00] – The challenges of being a sibling
[15.15] – Getting involved in sport or activity when young so the interest is established

Key Takeaways
Get children involved young in something that interests them, whether it is a sport or another activity, so that this stays with them as they grow older.