26 August 2021
Over the summer holidays, disabled young people all over the UK were challenged to take part in a month-long virtual tour of the world as part of At Home Superheroes: Superheroes on Vacation, powered by Marvel. We’re pleased to say that two of our young people rose to the challenge and took part, completing their own fantastic missions and raising money for Challengers.
This tour included 6 celebrity team captains and over 3,000 superheroes and their sidekicks, who joined together to virtually visit some of the world’s most popular travel destinations, during a time where travel has been impacted by the pandemic.
Challengers was proudly represented by two fantastic #TeamOrange superhero teams – Team Tornado, consisting of Joe who attends Basingstoke Youth with the help of his siblings Charlie and Isla, and Jack who attends Farnham Youth bravely flew solo.
Team Tornado set themselves the challenge of walking, running and cycling the equivalent of scaling the Avengers Tower and back down again (688 meters), ten times each week. The team achieved a combined distance of almost 370km, which equates to them climbing the Avengers Tower a whopping 538 times – an incredible result and achievement!
Joe’s mum Amy shared what Challengers means to him:
“Joe has autism with very high anxieties, a PDA profile, a language disorder and learning disabilities, as well as challenging behaviours. He has always been quite isolated apart from school, until he started attending Challengers. With lockdown meaning Challengers had to cancel some sessions, he was absolutely gutted. Despite our efforts, he spent the majority of time on his own not interacting with any of us. He doesn’t enjoy playing games and struggles with being the focus of attention.
We were getting to our wits end worrying, and then we saw that Challengers were offering Zoom sessions. We thought ‘what’s the worst that can happen?!’ and decided to give them a go. I was quickly shooed away, and after an hour and a half and when everyone said goodbye, Joe asked when the next one Zoom was – we couldn’t believe it and were so pleased that he’d enjoyed himself! Basingstoke Youth has been invaluable to Joe, he has been so animated about it, and really has relaxed by going. The staff at Challengers are all amazing and he adores it, so thank you all.”
Jack decided to take on the At Home Superheroes challenge to celebrate 10 years of attending Challengers in Basingstoke – what a milestone! He set himself the challenge of walking 100km in 4 weeks which he completed with flying colours, and even reached 70km with 10 days to go – well done Jack! Dad Mark shared what Challengers means to Jack:
“Challengers has been an amazing outlet for Jack over the past decade, starting out as a 6 year old in a new country, and still offering support and friendship now as he enters the last years of his youth.”
Now you’ve read all about our fantastic superheroes, you can watch them in action! At Home Superheroes was featured on Channel 4, featuring Team Tornado and Jack’s amazing achievements – check it out here.
It goes without saying that we are immensely proud of Joe and Jack for taking part in the challenge, and for kindly raising money for Challengers in doing so – a huge thank you to everyone who has supported them so far.