UK Deaf Sport has been working hard to raise the profile of the opportunities and successes that exist within the Deaf community. This work has resulted in us gaining invitations to one of the year’s most prestigious events in the sporting calendar. The BBC Sports Personality of the Year will see this year’s greatest sports people gathered in one room to celebrate our success as a nation. This year, for the first time a delegation from UK Deaf Sport will be there to represent deaf sport and share in the celebrations. Although the Deaflympics and other international deaf events will not be mentioned in the broadcast (due to be televised on Sunday 15th December on BBC1) this represents a great step forward in the recognition of our talented athletes.
Only having a few tickets means that we will not be able to take everyone to enjoy the evening with us, however we are sure that you will all be supportive of those selected and recognise that they will be representing all deaf sports people on the evening. The positive and unified approach that we are confident the deaf community will show will strengthen our case for increased inclusion in these type of events in the future.
Attendees have been selected in order to maximise the opportunity recognise both Deaflympic and non Deaflympic sports. The final names of those selected and invited will be available on the UKDS website once they have been confirmed.
We know that some people will be left disappointed not to have had the opportunity to experience such a night, but with limited numbers it has just not been possible to take all those that are deserving of the recognition. We hope that you will join your peers in spirit by tuning in to the event on Sunday 15th December on BBC1 and seeing if you can spot them in the audience and be proud of the fact that the support, effort and enthusiasm of deaf people to competing, coaching and developing deaf sport has resulted in this little milestone. UK Deaf Sport see this as a small victory and a vital step toward gaining greater recognition and visibility for Deaf sport and we will look to build on this relationship with the BBC to develop more coverage that will inspire a nation of deaf people to take up sport.