Arctic One Foundation
745. Matt Kirby
Matt Kirby founded the Arctic One Foundation, which supports those who need help with paying for entry fees, equipment and prostheses.
Matt has raised over £120,000 and bestowed more than 90 grants to participants in 24 sports. One beneficiary was Andy Lewis, who won a gold medal for Team GB in the PT2 triathlon at the Rio Paralympics. Andy’s journey began due to a donation from the ‘Arctic One Foundation’ and he is now a vocal supporter of the organisations as one of their Sports Ambassadors.
In a personal letter to Matt, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“Through the ‘Arctic One Foundation’, you are helping thousands of athletes, both disabled and able-bodied, to achieve their sporting goals. By improving sports access you are helping to create the Paralympians of the future and you should be proud of this valuable work. ”
“It is a great honour to receive this award and was totally unexpected. Setting up the ‘Arctic One Foundation’ has been extremely rewarding. We will continue to grow and help more para athletes pursue their sports from both grassroots to elite level. It is personally pleasing that the Foundation via this Points of Light Award is becoming recognised throughout the UK as we continue to grow.”
Paralympian Andy Lewis MBE said:
“Matt Kirby is someone that I look up too. I’ve known Matt for a number of years. We met when Arctic One talent spotted me at another event and started to teach me all about triathlon. I have learnt a lot from Matt and his trustees on how I should give back after winning Gold at the Rio Paralympics 2016 and have a lot to thank him for. This award is very well-deserved.”