Sled Dogs take the lead at the Phoenix Winter Games

Wounded, injured and sick (WIS) servicemen, women and veterans from around the country travelled to Wiltshire yesterday to take part in the annual Phoenix Winter Games hosted by Help for Heroes.
The Phoenix Winter Games are designed to bring together servicemen, women and veterans recovering from an injury or illness and give them an opportunity to enjoy some healthy competition in a fun environment.
The games, which are themed around the Winter Olympics and Paralympics, play an important role in the recovery programme for wounded veterans and service personnel, who formed teams from the four Help for Heroes recovery centres from Tidworth, Colchester, Plymouth and Catterick.
The grass root activities throughout the week mean that anyone can get involved which gives many the opportunity to be a part of a team again – something that is often missed when leaving the military.
Yesterday kicked off with Sled Dog racing, 18 malamute dogs and the competitors raced down a 30m chute – all hoping to seize the quickest time.
Among the participants was Andy Jones – an above leg amputee who served with the Royal Navy until a Naval Rugby injury unfortunately lead to him being discharged – “. It was 12 years ago today that I lost my leg, and now look at me – the games have been soul-lifting. It gets you having fun, we’re having a fantastic time. I’ll take away the lasting memories, the amount of camaraderie has been fantastic.”
The rest of the week will see the teams participating in Ice Hockey, Curling and even Skiing until the winning team is announced on Friday.
Tristan Cooper, Phoenix Centre Manager at Tedworth House Recovery Centre said “The Winter Games are about engaging the wounded, injured and sick community from across the whole of the UK,” he said. “Bringing them all together for some fun, healthy competition is great for morale and camaraderie. It didn’t matter what your injury or background was, everyone was happy to be there.”
The week has just begun but Team Tedworth are currently in the lead – keep an eye out on the Help for Heroes Facebook page to keep up with the results!
To give or get support from Help for Heroes, please visit

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