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Easter Seals to deliver boccia program in Corner Brook

Margaret Tibbo, president of ParaSport NL, demonstrates how the indoor version of boccia is played to participants and parents at an introduction to the sport in late December at the Studio in Corner Brook. Richard Kendell, whose son Steven was at the event, lends a helping hand.
Margaret Tibbo, president of ParaSport NL, demonstrates how the indoor version of boccia is played to participants and parents at an introduction to the sport in late December at the Studio in Corner Brook. Richard Kendell, whose son Steven was at the event, lends a helping hand.

Eastern Seals Newfoundland and Labrador is forging ahead with a vision to introduce boccia to various pockets of the province.

The organization, which oversees a well-established boccia program in St. John’s and a couple of more programs recently established in other parts of the province, will be introduced to Corner Brook at a try-it session planned for Sunday from 2-3:30 p.m. at Corner Brook Regional High.

Eileen Bartlett, director of programs with Easter Seals NL, is excited about boccia being offered in Corner Brook because she believes it’s an opportunity for people with disabilities to have a richer life from a recreational and social vantage point.

“(It is) a chance to engage in a sport that’s fully inclusive played by all people with all ages and abilities,” Bartlett said.

Boccia is a game of strategy and accuracy that was originally designed to be played by people with cerebral palsy. Now, the sport includes athletes with impairments that affect motor skills, but it’s also an activity that able-bodied people can play and is particularly catching on with seniors.

The sport is played on a flat, smooth surface, where players must throw or roll coloured balls (red and blue) as close as possible to a white target ball, known as the “jack.” The player, pair or team with the most balls near the jack is the winner.

Anybody interested in playing boccia or who needs more information on the program can contact Eileen Bartlett at Eileen@eastersealsnl.ca or call 1-709-754-1399.

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