Peterhead siblings prepare for Special Olympics

Zo� and John Kane are set to compete in the European games
Zo� and John Kane are set to compete in the European games

Two Peterhead siblings have made their way to Belgium to compete in the 2014 Special Olympics European Summer Games.

Zoë and John Kane both have additional support needs and have been training hard in the run up to the Games at the Beach Leisure Centre in Aberdeen.

The siblings will compete in Judo and although they have successfully managed to fundraise part of the money they needed for the trip, they are still hoping to raise more.

John, 28, and Zoë, 25, were also selected to meet Prime Minister David Cameron at Downing Street on the first leg of their journey before meeting the rest of their Great Britain team mates.

The team will travel to Antwerp on Tuesday, September 9, for a few days of exploring and training before the opening ceremony on Friday, September 12.

Zoë is supported by local learning disability charity Inspire, who empower the life choices of children, young people and adults with learning disabilities and additional support needs in the North East of Scotland.

She previously won gold in judo at the 2013 Special Needs British Open Championships in Motherwell and retrained in judo after winning both gold and silver medals in Shanghai’s Special Olympics for swimming in 2008 for team Great Britain.

Zoë is currently employed as a boccia coach with Inspire.

Her brother John has been a full-time team leader at Zanres Peterhead for the last ten years and has a four-year-old daughter, Keira, who loves to roll around on the mat with her dad.

He dislocated his elbow five months ago and has been training to get fit in time for the games.

John would like to thank the physio staff at Peterhead Hospital for all of their help and support.

The siblings are really looking forward to the Games and enjoy their sport.

Their mum, Denne Thompson, commented on how much judo can change the lives of anyone with a disablilty.

She said: “Whether it is a physical disability or a mental disability it doesn’t matter, it is amazing how it can help people overcome barriers.”

To sponsor Zoë and John, contact Grampian Special Olympics by visiting www.specialolympicsgrampian.btck.co.uk.