Nigel Martyn kicks off Disability Action Yorkshire’s “Own Goals” buddying scheme

Former England, Leeds United and Everton goal keeper Nigel Martyn has kicked-off a Harrogate charity’s new initiative aimed at benefiting the lives of disabled people. 

Disability Action Yorkshire’s “Own Goals” scheme is looking to provide volunteer “buddies” to work with disabled people in and around the district to achieve their own life goals, whatever they may be! 

These could be something as simple as going to the pub or the shops, as adventurous as hang gliding, or as essential as finding a job or living accommodation. 

The charity, which has its headquarters at Hornbeam Park and owns and runs a residential home on Claro Road, was recently awarded a £70,000 Government Grant to help it launch its new buddying scheme. 

In tandem to “Own Goals”, Disability Action Yorkshire is also starting a personal assistant service for younger disabled adults in the Harrogate area, providing personal care and support, as well as support for independent living. 

Disability Action Yorkshire chief executive Jackie Snape said: “We are very excited to be launching our ‘Own Goals’ buddying scheme, which we believe will make a significant difference to the lives of a good number of disabled people in the Harrogate area. 

“I’m delighted to say Nigel Martyn, who has been a very good friend to Disability Action Yorkshire over the last few years, is not only backing the initiative, he is kicking it off for us.” 

Mrs Snape added: “In order for Own Goals to be the success that we know it can and will be, we now need to sign up our own premier team of volunteer buddies to help disabled people live the lives they want to lead. 

“We are particularly interested to hear from those in the younger age bracket, as many of the disabled people we work with are in the 16–30 age range, but all applications will be very welcome. 

“There is no minimum or maximum time we would be looking for people to volunteer for, whatever anyone can spare is wonderful.  

“No experience is necessary as buddies will be given full training and ongoing support to carry out their role.   

“Buddying is an ideal vehicle for those looking at a career in either the care or health sector, or for anyone seeking a voluntary position within their local community. Full training will be given, together with on-going support.” 

Further information about both schemes is available by contacting Karen Minteh at Disability Action Yorkshire on 01423 855412 or by emailing her at

Former England, Leeds United and Everton goalkeeper Nigel Martyn (left) kicks off Disability Action Yorkshire’s Own Goals initiative with the help of Eliza Bennett and James Parker

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