Operation “La grande équipe” kicks off - Racing Club de Strasbourg Alsace


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Operation “La grande équipe” kicks off

This Wednesday, October 18 at Racing Soprema Parc, the Performance Centre of the Racing Club of Strasbourg Alsace, will see the kick off  of “La Grande Équipe”, an original initiative conceived by UGECAM Alsace (Union for the Management of Establishments of Health Insurance Funds) and the “Femmes de Foot” group, with the support of ARIC (Association Réadaptation Infantile Clemenceau) and RCSA for the benefit of the Clemenceau University Institute of Rehabilitation, a leading establishment in the field of paediatric disability.

This service project, initiated as part of a multidisciplinary approach to patient monitoring, is part of the build-up to the Paralympic Games which will take place next year in France, mainly in Paris. Its objectives are to democratize and encourage the practice of physical and sporting activities for children and adolescents in the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation department (MPR) of the Clemenceau University Institute of Rehabilitation (IURC), to promote sport by making know that many activities are possible depending on each person’s abilities to encourage the involvement of children and adolescents in their re-education and rehabilitation journeys, to allow a discussion concerning sport, disabled sports and physical activity adapted, to make children and their families want to participate and get involved in a sporting project and, finally, to make children want to identify with athletes and, next summer, to bring them to life with the magic of the Games on site.

“The entire team of the paediatric MPR department is very enthusiastic at the prospect of coming to meet the Strasbourg team thanks to the help of “Femmes de Foot” and Marc Keller. These moments are precious for children and adolescents who greatly appreciate sharing beautiful moments of play and sharing moments with players around sport. This will be an opportunity to thank Sabryna Keller and Femmes de Foot for funding therapeutic tricycles and adaptive bicycles which will be used that day. It will also be an opportunity to launch the “Grande Équipe” project, which aims to bring the magic of the Olympic and Paralympic Games to our young patients through a series of events throughout the year. And what a beautiful chance it can be for Strasbourg as a major player in Alsatian sport!” explains Dr Camille Marteau, Paediatrician and head of the paediatric MPR service at the IURC.

“We are very honoured to host this event,” continued Marc Keller, the President of Strasbourg. “I would like to salute the work of Femmes de Foot, particularly for young people with disabilities. The Association has allowed RCSA to be much more than a club and we are very proud of it. We have an important role to play with those who are in difficulty. Sports for the disabled sports and adaptive physical activity are good means of rehabilitation but they also allow us to open up to the world and better understand the future.”

Sabryna Keller, President of “Femmes de Foot” and sponsor of the event, recalls for her part that disability affecting children and adolescents is one of the major causes supported by the Association that she directs: “We have worked with the Clemenceau Institute for many years, and I have a lot of admiration for the work that is carried out there on a daily basis. We conceived this initiative together and the investment made in the purchase of the tricycles which will be presented at the launch will allow disabled children and teenagers to move around independently, while encouraging physical exercise. This “Grande Équipe” project brings together children, families, doctors and caregivers and the fact of organizing its official launch at Racing Club de Strasbourg Alsace is very symbolic.”

A launch which will therefore take place on October 18 at Racing Soprema Parc, in the presence of professional players and staff from Racing Club de Strasbourg Alsace. From 2 p.m., fifteen children who had service at the Clemenceau paediatric MPR  unit , accompanied by their therapists and caregivers, will be welcomed by Sabryna Keller and Doctor Camille Marteau then will participate in different activities (moving with the tricycles, meeting with and playing in small games with the Strasbourg players) before sharing a snack offered by “Femmes de Foot”.

“La Grande Équipe” will then continue its Olympic journey at Christmas, by organizing workshops and a Christmas market at the IURC. And next spring, “Rencontres Handisport” are scheduled to introduce patients to sporting activities, to create a link with local sports associations and to connect children with athletes from different disciplines. Finally, next summer, the children and supervisors of “La Grande Équipe” will travel to the site of the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games to attend para-archery, para-taekwondo and wheelchair rugby events, as well as wheelchair basketball.