LS Live 2012 young reporters welcome home Paralympic Athletes in Leeds

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Young reporters from LS Live 2012, (a DigitalMe project), met local Paralympians at the Athletes Homecoming celebration. Leeds has been the training ground for many Paralympic athletes from the region, such as Hannah Cockroft and Ali Jawad. They were joined by fellow athletes Claire Cashmore and David Stone, to receive a fantastic welcome home from Leeds locals on Millennium Square.

Young LS Live 2012 Reporters with Paralympic Athletes Hannah Cockroft and Ali Jawad

What the Paralympics show’s is that the public were so behind us and the amount of messages we’ve received about people being inspired us is such a great feeling.

LS Live young reporters Helen, Becca and Ashley were lucky enough to be in the centre of the excitement while working along side media professionals, grabbing interviews with both Hannah Cockroft, Double Gold Medallist in the T34 100m & 200m Wheelchair sprint and Ali Jawad, who narrowly missed out on a bronze medal in the powerlifting.

The UK is lucky to have so many high achieving athletes who now will be household names, inspiring young people who may have never thought about taking part in sport. Ali Jawad, Paralympic power lifter is still taking in his experience of the Paralympics “What the Paralympics show’s is that the public were so behind us and the amount of messages we’ve received about people being inspired by us is such a great feeling.”

Hannah Cockroft, Double Gold Medallist in her first Paralympics is only now realising she won’t be able to go shopping again in Leeds without being stopped by people “It is a bit weird now as everyone knows my name.”

Helen Westgarth, student from Roundhay High School in Leeds, has not only been inspired by watching the games on TV, but also by interviewing and talking to “down-to-earth’ athletes such as Hannah. “The Paralympics is such an inspiration, and as a young reporter I was so excited when I found out I could meet Leeds' top Paralympic athletes! Having interviewed Hannah Cockroft last year before she even knew that she had qualified for this year's Games, I was looking forward to meeting her again and seeing if she'd changed - apart from having two heavy gold medals around her neck, that is!”

This is just one of the many reporting experiences the LS Live 2012 young reporters have been involved in. Funded by Leeds Inspired, 20 young reporters have received sports reporting training and used their new skills presenting, interviewing and editing to create over 35 different video reports, covering all the action of the London 2012 Games from Leeds’ perspective. As well as the valuable skills they have learnt, some of the young reporters, such as Helen are now “spurred on even more to go for a career in broadcast journalism.”

You can see all the LS Live 2012 team’s reports here: http://www.makewav.es/lslive

Find out about more DigitalMe projects here: http://www.digitalme.co.uk

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Sally Molineaux
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