Player with disability in UK Power 100 list by Shaw Trust

North Devon Gazette

A disabled footballer from North Devon has been listed by Shaw Trust as one of the top 100 disabled people in the United Kingdom. Jack Littlejohns, aged 29, has a learning disability and plays for a local team called Barnstaple Ability Football Club, which is for boys and girls that have a disability.Â

They train at Park community school on a Thursday evening and they also compete at monthly football league tournaments, which are organised by the Devon Football Association. Jack was also one of the top four finalists for last year’s ITV regional Pride of Britain fundraiser of the year award.Â

Despite of all these accolades for Jack it’s his team and his football club that deserve the credit and the biggest award for him is his friendship with his teammates and continuing to work hard under the guidance of his coaches Steve Lowe and Peter Ashman. Â

Jack says: “2021 has been a phenomenal year in terms of putting our football club on the map for disabled people and having been nominated for the ITV regional Pride of Britain fundraiser of the year award, as well as being listed as part of the top 100 disabled people in the United Kingdom by Shaw Trust, solidifies that we’re heading in that direction of helping disabled people at our football club into becoming future stars through the power of football within our local community as well as elevating them to gain more social skills to help improve on their daily lives. Having gone through that process myself it’s a fantastic experience and having a great connection with everyone here at the club is the biggest achievement I could possibly have”. Â

Jack is now concentrating on another fundraising project for the community, which is to help the local Children’s Hospice by completing a first ever 15,000 feet tandem sky dive with his sister Annie Littlejohns in Honiton in June. So far, their Just Give fundraising page has now reached an outstanding £1,330.00. Â

“Having been successful with a lot of fundraising work in the past we decided that this year we would be dedicating it to the Children’s Hospice. The amount of work that they do in providing care and support for children with a life limiting illness as well as for their families has been phenomenal and it’s given me that confidence to try something new and challenging whilst helping out the local community in any way shape or form!”, Jack explains.Â