Canberra athletics carnival for children with a disability

15 Aug 2017


  • Be the best you can be
  • Community Involvement
  • Disability Sports Day

Regular physical activity is beneficial and important for all children. However, it can be difficult for local organisations to provide inclusive sport activities for people with a disability.

1 in 5 Australians have a disability and those with a profound disability are 9 times less likely to participate in activities outside of home.

In 2000, the ACT Paralympic Council saw the need for inclusion of people with a disability in sport. Together with our Managing Director, Richard Faulks, who was on the Council board, an annual community event was created. The ‘Be The Best You Can Be’ athletics carnival is an event specifically designed for children with a disability.

You can imagine how a unique athletics carnival designed just for children with a disability can be rewarding and fulfilling, not only for the children but also their teachers, carers and parents.

The ‘Be the Best You Can Be’ Athletics Carnival has now been running for 17 years and attracts over 400 children from  over 15 different Canberra primary schools, high schools and colleges. This event allows a child with a physical or intellectual disability to participate in a range of modified track and field events in a fun and supportive environment. They take part in a rotation of activities including sprints, vortex throw, long jump and shot put. Modified activities have proven to be effective for children with a disability in terms of ‘being in their body’ in a fun way. The supportive environment of the volunteers enhances and lifts the children’s attitude to their abilities and achievement.

I would like to pass on our thanks for the ‘Be The Best You Can Be’ day, our children thoroughly enjoyed it and we are really appreciative of your great organisation, the children’s presents and the kindness everyone showed our children.”
Teacher, at a Canberra school’s autism unit

The day includes a BBQ lunch for the athletes to enjoy as they watch a celebrity race, featuring mascots and celebrities. Tim Gavel, ABC Radio Sport’s Canberra broadcaster, will call the race which will feature paralympians, players from national sporting teams, and local mascots. A new addition this year will be The Woden School’s Party Down Productions which will provide entertainment over the lunch break. The children also receive specially branded merchandise featuring the sports day’s mascot Shaggy the turtle.

Key details

The ‘Be The Best You Can Be’ athletics carnival is for children with a disability
Location: AIS Track & Field Facility
Date: Thursday 7 September 2017
Time: 10am to 2pm (Juniors in morning and seniors in afternoon)
Registrations: Is your school interested in participating in the athletics carnival? Contact our events team today by phone on (02) 6285 8000 or by email before Friday 25th August 2017.
Sponsors: The staff at Snedden Hall & Gallop are not alone in creating this fantastic day out. The carnival would not be possible without the continued support of our enthusiastic and generous sponsors, including Supabarn, Capital Chemist, Cancer Council and the AIS. Please see the list of our 2017 sponsors.
Celebrity Attendance: This year we are excited to announce the attendance of world class para-athletes including Jayden Sawyer, who won a javelin gold medal at the world para-athletics championships in London; Louise Ellery, seated shotput paralympian as well as paralympian gold medal winning cyclist, Sue Powell. Canberra Vikings players Ben Hyne and Andrew Robinson will be attending the event. In addition, we have sports announcer Tim Gavel and local mascots Filbert Frog, Sid the Seagull, Happy Heart and Shaggy. And just announced: Victor the Viking and Brumby Jack!

Find out more about the ‘be the best you can be’ athletics carnival

If you have need more information about the event, please contact Snedden Hall & Gallop Lawyers by phone on (02) 6285 8000 or by email. You can find out more about Snedden Hall & Gallop’s community involvement.

Together with one of our sponsors, Little Athletics Athletics ACT, we are hoping that this event will provide any child with an interest in athletics a pathway into Little Athletics.