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Adaptive Sport Competition Empowers Disabled Veterans

Bridge II Sports hosts Valor Games 2016 sponsored by US Department of Veterans Affairs and MetLife

DURHAM, N.C. — May 3, 2016 — From May 23 to 26, disabled veterans and disabled members of the U.S. Armed Forces will compete at some of the most iconic sports venues in North Carolina during Valor Games Southeast. With a focus on empowerment, Valor Games Southeast is designed to draw participants into sports as a link to the community and improved health.

Bridge II Sports is proud to host the games for the fourth consecutive year, made possible by a grant from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and support from several community and corporate partners, including a generous event sponsorship from MetLife. This is the second consecutive year MetLife has sponsored Valor Games Southeast, and the company will host the closing ceremonies at its Cary Global Technology Campus on May 26.

“MetLife has a long connection to the U.S. military, with our first policies insuring Civil War soldiers against wartime-related disabilities,” said Marty Lippert, Executive Vice President and Head of MetLife Global Technology and Operations, and Executive Sponsor of the MetLife Veterans Initiative. “Today, we’re continuing that commitment not only through the products we sell, but also by actively recruiting veterans for roles across MetLife.” Nearly 150 MetLife Cary associates are volunteering at the Valor Games.

“When you live with a disability, you are constantly told that you can’t do certain things,” says Ashley Thomas, executive director of Bridge II Sports. “Valor Games Southeast challenges our participants and the community to redefine disability and see the power and potential of sports.”

The Southeast games draw over 100 Veteran athletes to the Triangle for entry level and intermediate competitions in nine adaptive sports, including: cycling, power-lifting, archery, boccia, indoor rowing, sitting volleyball, air rifle, table tennis and shot-put. Demonstrations and trials of wheelchair basketball and kayaking will be offered as well.

Events will take place at the Dean Smith Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Cameron Indoor Stadium and K-Ville at Duke University and Lake Crabtree Park.

“It is incredible to see our athletes compete on the most hallowed sports ground in North Carolina, if not the country! You can see a change in their self-confidence as they step or wheel onto these courts,” adds Thomas. “These venues, the spirit of competition and the connection to the North Carolina community make a real difference for these military men and women after injury.”

Events are free and open to the public. For more information on Valor Games Southeast 2016 and to view a schedule of events, visit www.bridge2sports.org/valor-games-southeast.

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One Response to “Adaptive Sport Competition Empowers Disabled Veterans”

  1. Tanner says:

    These folks do a ton to help bring adaptive sports to all disabled individuals. We have a monthly clinic here in AL at the Children’s hospital when they come mentor limb deficient kids and young people. You would be amazed what the Drs, Parents, and children have no idea what is out there for them to continue to be active and have fun, often at Zero Cost to the individual or their families from sports, to hunting, to plain old fun. I’m able bodied and its awesome every time I go participate, this is an important event.