Gold Challenge Gets Family Friendly in Dorset

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Diverse Abilities Plus, the Dorset charity that provides a range of support and education services for children and adults with disabilities across the county, is now part of the Family Gold Challenge. The initiative gives local families the chance to get involved in the excitement around next year’s Games, by taking part in family-friendly sports, and raising money through sponsorship for Diverse Abilities Plus.

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The Gold Challenge is a very exciting initiative and we are looking forward to seeing families and children getting involved and being part of next year’s Games.

As the only local Dorset-based charity taking part in the Gold Challenge, Diverse Abilities Plus hopes to raise in excess of £100,000 with the help of the local community.

Through the Family Gold Challenge, families and those aged 7 – 15 can sign up for free and can take part with a team made up of at least one adult (16 years plus) and at least one child. Adults can be family members, carers or youth leaders. (Anyone under 16 must receive parental permission.)

The Gold Challenge, which is partnered with the British Olympic Association, Sport England and Team GB, offers a range of sporting challenges. The 2012 themed sports have to be undertaken by 31 December 2012 and include gymnastics, athletics, football, badminton, sailing and volleyball.

Fun ways of getting involved includes:

  • Five Sport Challenge, where families and groups of young people get sponsored to take on five sports
  • Family Activity Challenge, which encourages families to learn sports together
  • 2012km Challenge where challenges must cover 2012km (individually or collectively) in one or more long distance sports, e.g. swimming, sailing, running and rowing. Shorter distances of, for example, 20.12km can also be tackled!

Mark Powell, CEO at Diverse Abilities Plus, said: “The Gold Challenge is a very exciting initiative and we are looking forward to seeing families and children getting involved and being part of next year’s Games. We have 100 spaces available for families and children, aged under 16, and we would urge you to get involved, try out sports that you may never have had the chance to try, and have fun, while raising money for a great cause.”

Diverse Abilities Plus is also continuing to sign up those over 16 years for the Gold Challenge and spaces are still available. Entry can be as part of a team – ideal for groups of friends or colleagues - or as an individual, with the aim of taking part in five, ten, 20 or 30 sports, or with the aim of completing the 2012km challenge.

To find out more about the Family Gold Challenge please visit or contact Diverse Abilities Plus by emailing fundraising(at)diverseabilitiesplus(dot)org(dot)uk, calling 01202 718266 or visiting

You can follow the charities updates on Facebook at and Twitter at
Editors Notes

Diverse Abilities Plus is a charity that has been supporting children and adults with Cerebral Palsy and associated disabilities working in the County of Dorset, England for 55 years. The charity provides a range of assistance, support and education services for young people aged two to 19, adults and families. Services include

  • Langside School – independent, non maintained specialist day school for children and young people from the age of two to 19 years who have PMLD (profound and multiple learning disabilities). It’s one of only 19 similar SEN (special education needs) schools in the UK.
  • Smithers – provides overnight and day short breaks. Short breaks help families manage the challenges of providing full time care for their child. A visit can be during the day or a ‘sleep over’ allowing the child to make and meet friends and relax and enjoy themselves.
  • Shapes – provides home support (domiciliary care) for children and young people aged between two and 18 with individually tailored programs.
  • Project My Time – provides child-led holiday activities that give young people with disabilities the same leisure and fun opportunities that their peers enjoy.
  • Barnabas – a well equipped day setting for adults. Adults can learn new skills and enjoy a wide range of experiences.
  • Supported living – this service is for people who live in their own home but may need up to 24/7 support.

The charity was founded in 1955 by Mrs Phyllis Edwards who formed a group of parent’s intent on providing better opportunities for their children with physical and learning disabilities.

Visit Diverse Abilities Plus Facebook page at
Visit the Diverse Abilities Twitter page at

The Gold Challenge is an independent, not-for-profit organisation and works with the British Olympic Association, Sport England, sportscotland, Sport Wales, ParalympicsGB and the National Governing Bodies of the Olympic and Paralympic sports. It is part of the official mass participation legacy programme for London 2012.

For more information

Contact: Zoe Hiljemark, PR Account Director / Jenny Pearce, Senior PR Account Executive
E-mail: zoe(at)marketing-matters(dot)co(dot)uk / jenny(at)marketing-matters(dot)co(dot)uk
Tel: +44 (0) 1202 777111 / +44 (0) 7770 924439
Address: Marketing Matters, Unit C, Acorn Business Park, Ling Road, Poole, Dorset, UK, BH12 4NZ

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Jenny Pearce
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