Arthur, from Scotland, started attending a Whizz-Kidz youth group (known as an Ambassador Club) in 2005 and later joined the charity’s Kidz Board. He also received a specialised sports wheelchair to play basketball in from Whizz-Kidz in 2006. Arthur is now a member of the Scottish Youth Parliament.
‘Before I had my basketball chair from Whizz-Kidz, I had a heavy chair that made me really slow. But my new chair is so much lighter, so I can go faster and it’s much easier to turn, which makes basketball much more fun – it even helps my balance.
‘As well as providing me with a chair that means I can join in and play sport, Whizz-Kidz’s other services have also made a real difference to my life.
‘Before I attended my first Ambassador club in 2005 I was very shy and found it really hard to approach people. Since then my confidence has grown; it has totally turned me around. Whizz-Kidz even nominated me to train to become a Young Leader, so I now help other children with the same things I’ve been through, and even lead activities at the Edinburgh Ambassador club. This is definitely something I wouldn’t have been able to do before. And I really feel like I have made a network through the clubs.
‘In 2006 I became a member of the Kidz Board where I sat for three years. The board is really important – it’s a group of young people who discuss and promote issues affecting wheelchair users. I think that without the vital work the Kidz Board carries out, there would be even more young disabled people without support.
‘I was really proud to become a representative of the Scottish Youth Parliament. I find discussing the policies really interesting, and when I make decisions it’s not only for myself, but always with all the other young disabled people in mind. I like to make a difference.
‘My best advice to others would be: don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t do something – just try your hardest and never give up.’
- Arthur speaking at the House of Commons
- Arthur during his time on the Kidz Board