Welcome to Between the Margins - a show about human rights and people's pursuit of 'Happily Ever After.'
On our February 1st show, about Paralympic Athletes, we spoke with Canadian Paralympic Swimmer and medalist Darda Sales (formerly Darda Geiger), and US Paralympic Soccer player and international comedy superstar, Josh Blue.
RBC Olympian and Paralympic Swimmer Darda Sales represented Canada in the 2000 Summer Games in Sydney (where she took home Gold in the 4 x100 m medley relay) and in the 2004 Summer Games in Athens (where she achieved Silver in the 4 x 100m medley relay).
In 2010, Darda had the honour of being selected to promote the Olympic Torchbearer for the St. Thomas leg of the Torch relay (you can read more about it HERE in the Port Stanley News).
Darda also spoke about the tribute paid to Paralympic Athletes by Pfizer Canada and the Canadian Paralympic Committee, in the form of a free online book dedicated to our nation's Paralympic Team.
The book 'Kids of Courage' (available in e-book and audio format) was written by award-winning author and teacher Cynthia Pratt Nicolson and illustrated by renown mouth-painter Susie Matthias. The audio version is narrated by Canadian Sledge Hockey Player, Benoit St-Armand.
Kids of Courage is an inspirational work, containing stories that honour our Athletes by demonstrating that to believe in oneself can allow us to not only reach for our dreams, but attain them, despite the challenges one might face.
"This e-book shows that when you dream big and believe in yourself you can achieve amazing things," says Henry Storgaard, CEO, Canadian Paralympic Committee, adding that Canadians will get to see the determination and skill of Paralympians in action during the lead-up to March 2010.
"It's energizing to feel the outpouring of support from our friends at Pfizer and from sports fans across Canada," says Canadian sledge hockey player Benoit St-Amand. "We hope these stories will encourage Canadians to learn more about Paralympic sport and watch us in action this March. Most of all, we hope these stories will encourage Canadians to reach for their own dreams and do everything they can to live a healthy, inspired life no matter what."
As part of their 'More Than Medication' wellness initiative, the Canadian Paralympic Committee and Pfizer are donating 40,000 copies of the book to local libraries across Canada (with copies available in Braille for educators). Coupled with the free, online copies of the book that are available - parents, teachers and families alike can share in these inspirational tales together.
'More than Medication' is dedicated to helping Canadians lead healthier lives by providing information on non-medicinal means of personal wellbeing. These areas include: Eat Better, Strengthen Your Mind and Body, Manage Stress, Be Brave, Relate Better and Be In Charge of Your Own Health Care.
To download your free copy of 'Kids of Courage', go to More Than Medication or follow the link from the Paralympic website.
We also had the opportunity to talk to a inspirational US athlete, who just happens to be an international comedy superstar to boot.
US Paralympic Soccer Player Josh Blue is more famously known as the winner of the 4th Season of the NBC hit show, "Last Comic Standing". Despite the challenges of having Cerebral Palsy, Josh has earned success that most of us will never know.
He jokes, "I realize that people are going to stare, so I want to give them something to stare at."
Down-to-earth, extremely personable, and incredibly likeable, Josh forces the able-bodied world to take a new look at those they label 'disabled'. His brand of "reverse teasing" (as he refers to it) makes people take a humbling look at themselves - challenging stereotypes and preconceived notions they may have about people with a physical disability.
But aside from being a world renowned Comedian, Josh points out that he is a "damn good soccer player."
When asked which position he plays, he responded in his usual humorous nature, "Striker. A goal scorer... in theory. I mean, I've SEEN it done."
While his time on the US Paralympic Soccer Team hasn't seen any medal action, Josh commented that it was tough to compete with countries like the Soviet and Brazil - where team members live together, and train together, sometimes twice or more daily.
"The US Team... not so much," he laughs.
Although he has a non-stop, coast-to-coast comedy tour, and all the responsibilities of being a Father of one (and one-on-the-way in May), he is still on the roster as one of the now-senior members of the US Team.
For those who might want a bit more information on Josh Blue, you're welcome to check out his website.
We also wanted to note that for those who enjoyed Josh's comedy styling, he has a live show coming up at 7 p.m. on March 5th, 2010 in Macomb, MI (which is about 2 hours from London).
This fundraising event, which supports ARC Services (a non-profit organization that supports and encourages independence and life success for disabled people), will also feature MA Comedian Don White.
Performances will be held at the Macomb Center for the Performing Arts, and tickets can be purchased HERE. There are floor seats, as well as special memberships that allow you to attend a Dessert Reception and 'Meet and Greet' after the performance.
Join us again on February 15th for our next show: LGBT Parenting.