In a boost to their aim of becoming a fully inclusive football club, Altrincham FC have appointed Samm Lewis as its first Disability Officer.
A lifelong supporter, Samm is a familiar face to most Robins’ fans, having volunteered as a ball girl, sold programmes, worked on the turnstiles, been a safety steward and welcomed guests in the Boardroom on a matchday for over 20 years.
However it is her achievements away from the football club that are most impressive and further underline why Samm is the perfect person to take on this role.
Away from football Samm has competed as a Para-Swimmer and attended national championships for the last 13 years, winning medals in various events. She attended trials for both the London and Rio Paralympic Games, and the British Para-Swimming International competitions for the last 10 years. Amongst other achievements, Samm has represented England at the last 2 Cerebral Palsy World Games, firstly in Nottingham winning Silver medals in 50m & 100m Freestyle, 100m Backstroke (all in the S9 Category) and became World Champion in 100m Breaststroke (SB8 Category) and last year in Spain, Samm won Silver medals in 50m Freestyle and 100m Breastroke (S8 and SB7 categories respectively) and became World Champion in 100m Backstroke, 100m Butterfly and 200m Individual Medley (S8 and SM8 categories respectively). As well as competing at an International level, Samm also coaches at Satellites Swimming Club and is the Team Manager of Manchester and North West Disability Swimming Club.
As Samm explains “My experience of working closely with people that have such a wide variety of disabilities and needs has given me the skills for this role to help develop new relationships with the disability community, offer support to existing home & away fans and encourage a new generation of disabled fans for the club.“
Jordan Tyms, Head of Inclusion adds “It‘s fantastic that Samm has agreed to take on this new role for the club, joining Steven Sherratt, LGBT+ Officer as a member of our Inclusion team. We are committed to making the football inclusive for all by removing barriers and creating opportunities and Samm will play a key part in this.”
If you would liketo share your views, suggestions or experiences of the matchday experience at the J Davidson Stadium please email: [email protected]
Included on photo (l to r): Bill Waterson - Director, Samm Lewis – Disability Officer, Jordan Tyms – Head of Inclusion