The 2023 Great Illawarra Walk happened once again on March 11th. The Illawarra Academy of Sport is in partnership with the Great Illawarra Walk to support the Athlete with a Disability (AWD) program. Alongside the Great Illawarra Walk we raised funds to build a purpose-fit gym for athletes with disabilities.

The 2023 walk began at Bean Roasted Bar Shellharbour (Addison Street) at 7.00m on Saturday 11th March and finishes at Headlands Hotel Austinmer. The walk finished at Headlands Hotel Austinmer, with a finale party throughout the afternoon. 100% of the funds raised from this event go directly to the IAS, enabling us to provide the highest level of support for para-athletes in the Illawarra through a purpose-fit gym as well as supporting the regional gyms that we have an association with – thus supporting all para-athletes throughout the Illawarra region.

Building a gym from the ground up allows design features that combined, have not been incorporated elsewhere. It allows us to select the specific equipment that is required for para-athletes, the modified fittings to cater for specific needs, the correct spacing that allows for wheelchair access and maneuverability, sensory and reflective guiding for visually impaired access, specific coach support and a whole lot more. Through this funding we have the chance to provide immense opportunity to the para-athletes of the Illawarra. Whilst also providing for able-bodied IAS athletes, this gym provides the opportunity to create a new home for Para-athletes and IAS athletes in a para-athlete space. Negotiations are already underway with potential providers to allow the housing of a such a gym space.

πŸšΆπŸ‘ A special thanks to all the volunteers and walkers who contributed to making this a day to remember. Can’t wait to see you all there for the Great Illawarra Walk in 2024!!!

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