Aiken PR

The Briefing

Progressive backing for disability sports until end of 2023

by Aiken PR





Reaffirming its commitment to supporting disability sports across Northern Ireland, Progressive Building Society has announced a one–year partnership renewal with Disability Sport NI. 

To date over 8,000 disabled people here have been able to access a range of sports programmes through Disability Sports Hubs located in each council area across Northern Ireland.

Since 2019, Progressive has been working closely with Disability Sport NI to support activity leaders and volunteers in each council area deliver a range of local sport and active recreation sessions, resulting in 34,000 participant opportunities to improve the health and wellbeing of disabled people.

New to the programme for 2023 is a collaboration with the Royal National Institute of Blind People and Archery NI, to host a bespoke archery programme for people with sight loss. The unique event was launched last week at Ulster University’s Jordanstown campus and will be the first in a series of archery activities specially designed for people with visual impairment.  

Commenting on the partnership renewal, Progressive’s Chief Executive Darina Armstrong said: “Disability Sport NI has been working tirelessly to improve the health and wellbeing of disabled people through sport and active recreation and we are pleased to be supporting them on their journey. The team at Progressive is looking forward to seeing the rollout of disability sports events and activities that are as exciting as they are inclusive over the coming year.

“At Progressive, we are passionate about making a valuable contribution to local people and communities across Northern Ireland and will continue to support Disability Sport NI on their journey towards an inclusive society.”

As well as the all–new archery event, the new programme of activities will also see the return of the regional Schools Boccia competition and Swim Ulster Open championships. Also on the calendar for 2023 is a Deaf Sports event, a new multi–sports initiative for those living with deafness and hearing impairments. 

Kevin O’Neill, Chief Executive of Disability Sport NI, welcomed the partnership renewal, stating: “The support from Progressive since 2019 has been instrumental in enabling more disabled people in every area of Northern Ireland to have the opportunity to participate in much needed sports and active recreation opportunities in their local area.”

“Over the past two years or so, we’ve all experienced very challenging times, however we are very pleased to have been able to adapt our programmes and offer a range of online options; ranging from low intensity zoom sessions to walking challenges and a NI virtual Boccia league, which have all proved very popular with a wide demographic. We look forward to working with Progressive beyond 2022 to strengthen the partnership through the provision of a range of new and innovative recreational activity sessions and competitions across Northern Ireland for disabled people and those with long–term health conditions.”