Vicky Rowe from St Austell won Gold in Sport England's fourth annual Sportivate awards in recognition of her outstanding contribution to sport.
Vicky was nominated for this National Award after initially winning the South West Sportivate Participant of the Year Award (Regional).
When Vicky first enrolled on the course, she was overweight, unfit & lacking self-confidence. Despite being so young, she took on the role of full time carer to her husband who has cerebral palsy after his mother died.
She had ridden for a short period of time as a very young child but was unable to continue for various reasons. With her self-esteem terribly low and realising that she was sinking into depression, she knew she had to take action and so she bravely contacted us. She was frightened we would turn her away because of her weight and how she would be perceived but we encouraged her to give it a go.
At the end of her first Sportivate session, she burst into tears because she loved it so much. Over the course, she continued to flourish. Through funding from various organisations, she continues to ride and now has a carer in for her husband for one day a week so that she can volunteer around the yard here to give her some respite.
She has lost three stone in weight & her confidence & mental outlook is amazing.
Vicky said: "Thanks to the Sportivate sessions at Barguse I feel that I have my life back. I found the sessions were affordable, fitted my routine well as a carer for my husband and made me happier and healthier. I feel free of any worries when in the saddle!" I'm really honoured to have been named South West Participant of the Year and my next ambition is to help others in a similar situation".
Vicky's new love of Equestrian has seen her now work one day a week volunteering at Barguse Riding centre where she continues to give back to a sport that she has so much respect for, she has also been asked to take on the role of volunteer hoof chair for 'Hoof', where she is tasked with helping to promote equestrian in Cornwall. Now her confidence has grown and she's made new friends with other people in the project and continues to be a role model for others who are looking to take up the sport.
Motivated by our #ThisGirlCan Cornish girls? Then why not visit www.getactivecornwall.co.uk and search for an activity near you or get in touch and we can get you started.