Glasgow inspired cycling event brings success for Masters student

Fri, 27 Mar 2020 16:19:00 GMT
Noelle Stanford is now working at NL Balance and Dizziness Centre
Noelle Stanford is now working at NL Balance and Dizziness Centre

A GCU student’s experience on placement in Glasgow has led to her winning a regional award – after she helped bring a community closer together on the other side of the world.

MSc Occupational Therapy student Noelle Stanford received recognition from RCOT Scottish Western Region for putting on a cycling event in her native Canada, which allowed people with a range of disabilities to get involved in the sport.

Since receiving the “Occupation For All” award in December, she’s also secured a job back home at Newfoundland (NL) Balance and Dizziness Centre.

Noelle explained that she owes a lot of her success to her time spent studying in Glasgow.

She said: “My second placement at GCU was in learning disabilities in the community. One of our clients had autism and was sometimes disruptive in the classroom. We got him involved with Glasgow Green’s Cycling Club and it made such a difference to him - he was completely relaxed and absolutely loved it.

I took this experience back home because a lot of people had been telling me they wanted to get involved in cycling. I rented an outdoor track and the local community really got behind the event.

We had people there of all ages and there was equipment to suit differing disabilities, so everyone was involved. It was so successful that we hosted another event the following month and now plan to host it again this summer.”

Noelle, who captained the GCU Women’s Basketball team, also spoke of her delight at her project being recognised by RCOT.

She said: “It was just a few days before I was heading back to Canada, so it was a nice way to finish off here. I’m really grateful to everyone at GCU and my mentor at the NL Balance and Dizziness Centre, who provided so much support in helping plan the event.”

Noelle added: “It was just great to see the smile on everyone’s face that day – that was the most rewarding part. The main thing in occupational therapy is that nothing is impossible, we just want people of all ages to get the most out of life.”


By Ross Clark

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