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17th March 2017
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World record-breaking paralympic athlete champions independent living opportunity
If anyone is an inspirational role model for illustrating the rewards in overcoming a disability, it's Jon-Allan Butterworth. The 25-year-old is considered one of the country's brightest hopefuls for the London 2012 Paralympic Games in the cycling category, having already broken numerous British and world records. The athlete has teamed up with independent living solutions provider AKW to demonstrate that having a disability does not mean you cannot be self-sufficient in the home.
Jon-Allan was serving as a weapons technician in Iraq in 2007 when a rocket attack hit Basra Air Station, where he was based. Forced to undergo an emergency operation, he had his left arm amputated above the elbow and a prosthetic arm attached. In the years since, Jon-Allan has trained with the British Cycling team and quickly surpassed expectations, setting a British record in the 4km Individual Pursuit and a World record in the 1km Time Trial.
Since the accident, Jon-Allan has gained a new-found respect for the day-to-day challenges that individuals living with a disability have to face. It was AKW's message of inclusive living that attracted Jon-Allan to working with the innovative company.
The Paralympic contender explains: "I am proud of the fact that I have overcome my own personal disability to accomplish great sporting achievements, and believe that AKW and I share many similar views with regard to our attitude towards independent living.
"Although my disability is not as debilitating as others, I train with many people who suffer from a range of disabilities who understand the need for daily living solutions that offer style, choice and value for money. AKW unquestionably provides this, which is why I am thrilled to be working with them.
"The company offers a whole range of products for the kitchen and bathroom, suited to all requirements. The two kitchen ranges are contemporary in design and suitable for not only those with a disability but other friends and family too.
"For example, the rise-and-fall units are great for wheelchair users, providing access to everything they need in the kitchen. These units can be operated either manually or electronically.
"I was also really struck by the sheer variety of products AKW had to offer; from easy-grip controls to pull-out larders, taps with extendable handles, pull-out ironing boards, side-opening doors on ovens and fully insulated units.
"AKW also supplies a range of products for the bathroom. Colourful grab rails for the visually impaired are really useful and adjustable shower seats help those with restricted mobility. In addition showering has been made easier through electric showers. I was particularly impressed with the Luda, an award-winning shower that even contains audio recognition features. Adapted wet rooms can make a huge difference too.
"With such a remarkable range of products available, those living with a disability now have a specialist company they can turn to.
"It is a privilege to partner with AKW and spread its message of independent living. As my training continues up until the Paralympic Games in August, both AKW and I will be working hard to show that people can embrace their disability and lead an active and independent lifestyle."
3rd February 2012