Young Achiever 2019

As previously announced, it was decided by the Board of Trustees that we would no longer continue with the Young Achiever Award which coincided with our Fun Day Event. In its place, we agreed that Trustees would consider the achievements of our members over the year with a view to selecting an annual Achiever that would be decided on at our April Board meeting. We also stated that we would welcome nominations from our Group members if they wanted their child to be considered for the award and an Amazon prize voucher.

In 2018 we were proud to award Garrett Eeles the award.

For 2019, we are delighted to present this award to Jamie Watson from Harrogate.

Jamie, pictured here at the Junior Nationals in Southampton in 2018, is an accomplished para-swimmer and has many medals to show for his dedication and hard-work.

Jamie has recently been re-classified as an S8 swimmer for all strokes (he was previously S9). He has a Grade 4 injury with 2 surgeries – Nerve Graft and Zancolli Transfer.

He has qualified for every National Para Swimming Competition after his first year of competing – which was spent gaining race experience and times.

He has qualified for the Junior Para National Swimming Competition also although he hasn’t always attended these meets even though he’s qualified.

Jamie is really close to an International Para-Swimming qualifying time, which is his goal this season – to achieve International Para Swimming times.

Although Jamie is registered with his local swimming club’s disability squad and swims with them at home galas. He and a couple of others are actually in a mainstream club squad for all of his pool time as it is more challenging for them.

Mum Debie says: “Jamie started swimming lessons at age 4, the same age as his older brother and sister. We were lucky in that there was a disability swimming session he could go to that was 1-2-1 group sessions. After a year I moved him from that group to a different club who taught him his strokes. This was wonderful for Jamie, he swam with friends from school and the club were brilliant at making sure he progressed with his peers by adapting the strokes to suit Jamie. It helped that one of the swim instructors knew Jamie really, really well from nursery and pushed him in the right way.

By the time Jamie left that club he was in junior school and needed more, so we went back to the disability club at a higher level this time. Jamie aced his try out with them and his coach was really excited to expand his squad and allow Jamie to train with them.

Wow the training schedule was a shock! No early mornings at this point though, they came later.

So Jamie went from swimming once a week for 30-60mins to 3 times a week for a minimum of an hour. He now has extra sessions for stretching and gym work”.