Friday, November 12, 2010

New Zealand Outward Bound offers scholarships for people with arthritis or MS

From Voxy in New Zealand:

People with arthritis or multiple sclerosis are being given the opportunity to attend an Outward Bound course specially designed with their conditions in mind.

Both Arthritis New Zealand and the Multiple Sclerosis Society of NZ are each offering two scholarships to attend Aspire - a low impact Outward Bound course tailored for people with a physical limitation or old sporting injury.

Outward Bound Chief Executive, Trevor Taylor, who has himself undergone a bi-lateral knee transplant, relating to a history of arthritis, recently attended the course.

"For years I'd wanted to take part in an Outward Bound course but was restricted in terms of what I could do due to the operation I had undergone.

"The introduction of the Aspire course changed all of that for me and after nine years at the helm at Outward Bound I was finally able to fully immerse myself in one of our courses."

Trevor said Aspire has been cleverly designed to offer all the challenge, adventure and excitement of a typical Outward Bound course but with less physical impact.

'Whilst on the course, I participated in all the usual activities Outward Bound is renowned for including sailing, kayaking and rock climbing.

"I was able to do so because all of the activities had been carefully adapted to cater for people who might have problems arising from a previous injury or medical issue.

"We're delighted to be able to extend this eight day course to people with arthritis and multiple sclerosis.

"The development of these scholarships, with Arthritis New Zealand and the Multiple Sclerosis Society of New Zealand, forms part of our commitment to making the benefits of an Outward Bound experience accessible to as many New Zealanders as possible.

"The aim of the course is to get people who find physical activity challenging into the outdoors and really challenge them in a safe and considered way.

"Aside from the physical activities, participants will also be encouraged to step outside their comfort zones mentally so that they can gain a better understanding of their own personal strengths."

To be eligible for one of the scholarships, applicants must be over 27 years old and have multiple sclerosis or arthritis.

Scholarship applications close on Friday 26 November 2010. The course will take place from 13 - 20 February 2011.