My name is Luke David and I am 26 years old. I have been selected as part of an eight player squad to represent Australia at the Powerchair Hockey World Championships between September 22 and October 1, 2018, in Lignano-Sabbiadoro, Italy. At 18 months old, I was diagnosed with a rare neuromuscular disorder, Nemaline Myopathy. I got my first powerchair when I was 3 years old and it was also around the same time I got my first BiPap ventilator. My biggest passion, my biggest dream in life has always been about sport. Growing up has had its many challenges. One of them being that I couldn’t pick up a football and kick it with friends and family. My family and I spent years looking for sports I could participate in but we just couldn’t find anything suitable. I never gave up on my dream though, at times I never thought it would happen but here am I now, thirteen years since I first picked up a hockey stick, I’m on my way to Italy.
I have been involved in powerchair sports since 2005, playing locally and representing my home state, Victoria in National competitions. Since 2014, I have been the President of the Victorian Electric Wheelchair Sports Association, the organisation that started my journey to here and now. Although I have represented Australia in another sport, Powerchair Football, this will be my first time competing internationally and at the absolute highest level, the World Championships. I am beyond proud and honoured to represent my country in a sport I love.
Powerchair Hockey is a modified version of Hockey for powerchair users. It is similar to Floorball/Ice Hockey and is played on an indoor basketball court. Powerchair Hockey is a fast-paced, tactical game and an excellent spectator sport. The sport was birthed in Europe in the 1970’s and although it has been played in New South Wales since 2000, it has only just recently had its inaugural National Championships this year. Australia first competed in the 2004 World Cup Hockey Competition, in Helsinki. The Australian team was ranked 8th at the 2014 Electric Wheelchair Championship held in Munich, Germany. The game is gaining international recognition and a growing network of athletes and fans.
I am seeking support from the community to get me to Italy with the right equipment and supports needed in order for me to represent Australia. My family and I have to fund a 10 day trip that includes training and a week of competition. Currently, there is little to no financial support for powerchair sports and therefore all costs must be funded by the athlete.
Through this fundraising platform, I hope to raise enough funds to cover transport, accommodation and equipment costs for training camps held in Australia and for participating at the World Championships in Italy for myself and a carer. All donations are tax deductible!
All donations, no matter how small, will help me represent Australia at the peak of my chosen sport. I truly appreciate all the support from each and every one of you. Whether it be by donating, sharing and spreading the word, you are truly making a dream of mine come true. For businesses, community groups and for larger donations, I would love to give back in any way I can. Please contact me to see how I can give back!
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