WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Department of Veterans Affairs awarded nearly $16 million in grants to qualifying organizations to help more than 13,000 disabled Veterans and members of the Armed Forces participate in adaptive sports.
Adaptive sports are competitive or recreational sports and activities customized to fit the needs of disabled Veterans and athletes, including Paralympic sports, archery, cycling, skiing, hunting, rock climbing, and sky diving. These activities allow Veterans to rehabilitate through recreation and encourage an active and fit lifestyle.
This year, participants in VA’s Adaptive Sports Grant program also have the opportunity — for the first time ever — to receive certification in scuba, CrossFit, and sailing.
“Adaptive sports empower Veterans to live without limits,” said VA National Veterans Sports Programs & Special Events Director Leif Nelson, DPT. “These Veteran athletes should be focused on having fun, staying healthy, competing, and rehabilitating – free of concern about the structural or financial challenges associated with adaptive sports – and that’s exactly what these grants will help them do.”
Navy Veteran Brad Snyder is a six-time gold medal-winning Paralympic athlete who credits VA with the opportunity to participate in grant programs that support the Paralympics.
“VA’s grant program goes a long way toward alleviating the financial burdens associated with athletic competitions, paving the way for some of our country’s most promising athletes to pursue dreams of victory and success in elite competitions such as the Paralympic Games,” said Snyder.
VA has awarded a total of $100 million in adaptive sports grants in the last eight years to improve Veterans’ well-being and independence.
Learn more about the awardees and details of the program. Follow @Sports4Vets for information on VA’s adaptive sports and arts programs.