Hackney’s Damaris scores at Deaflympics

Local women’s footballer Damaris Cooke is putting her Hackney Youth Sports Fund cash to good use – to help finance a trip to Taiwan where she is participating in the Deaflympics, being held this week.

The Deaflympics, now in its 21st year, is a multi-sport event for deaf athletes and Damaris is a defender in Great Britain s Women s Football Team. She has helped the team excel in their matches, first beating Japan 6-1 then thrashing Thailand with an 18-nil victory before losing their final group game 2-6 to Russia. The team now face a tough semi-final match against reigning champions USA today (Friday, September 11).

Earlier this year, Damaris, from Homerton, received a Gold Award through the Council fund, receiving free access to Hackney Leisure Centres, fitness gear and £500. She is one of many local young athletes and sports organisations that have benefited from financial support towards the cost of sporting facilities, equipment and training.

Cllr Guy Nicholson, Hackney Council Cabinet Member for Regeneration and the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, said: “Hackney is extremely proud of Damaris and her contribution to Team GB’s achievements in the international arena. In the run up to London 2012, the Council is investing into our borough s talented athletes and it is great to see a Hackney resident achieving success in the Deaflympics.”

Hackney Youth Sports Fund was set up with cash from an out of court settlement made to Hackney Council from sports company Nike, for unauthorised use of the Hackney logo on its sportswear. Hackney’s Sports Development Team is taking applications for the next round of Hackney Youth Sports Fund grants from young athletes that have been identified by their school, organisation or coach. For more information, contact Sarah Davies on 020 8356 7563 or email:

Photo caption: Damaris being presented with her Hackney Youth Sports Fund earlier this year by Hackney Paralympian Dervis Konuralp.


Notes to editor

1)Hackney is one of the five host boroughs for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. In 2012, Hackney will host the media centres, the Handball Arena and the Hockey Arena. The media centres will remain after 2012 and will provide employment space. The Handball Arena will be transformed into a multi-sport community facility. The Hockey Arena is temporary and will be taken down after the 2012 Games. Find out more: