Inspirational women announced as ambassadors

In honour of International Women’s Day, Leonard Cheshire has announced Paralympic athlete Olivia Breen and television presenter and disability rights campaigner Sophie Morgan as its newest ambassadors.

As ambassadors, Olivia and Sophie will be instrumental in helping the international charity reach new audiences and spread awareness about its campaigns and programmes, ultimately supporting individuals to live, learn and work as independently as they choose.

Paralympian Olivia began training at the City of Portsmouth Club at age 12 where her athletic skills quickly became apparent.

Both a talented sprinter and long jumper, Olivia is the current IPC World Champion for the T38 long jump which she won in 2017.

More recently, in 2018’s Commonwealth Games in Australia, Olivia claimed gold for Wales with both a games record and personal best in the long jump in her class.  

Discussing her new role as ambassador, Olivia commented:

‘I am so excited to have become a new ambassador for Leonard Cheshire.

‘The charity’s hashtag “Actually, I can” resonates with me as my independence is something which has always been very important to me.

‘I really respect the aims and values of Leonard Cheshire in trying to help people live as independently as possible.’

On the theme of this year’s International Women’s Day, #BalanceForBetter, Olivia added:

‘As a disabled woman I think it’s really important that we all work hard to make sure our world is balanced to give everyone equal opportunities and that we continue the great work which has already been done to eliminate all forms of discrimination and prejudice.’

Well-known for leading the Channel 4 2016 Paralympic coverage in Rio, Sophie Morgan’s television career also includes hard-hitting reporting such as the 2015 BBC Three Documentary ‘The World’s Worst Place to Be Disabled’, which depicted the abuse of human rights suffered by disabled people in Ghana.  

As a steadfast advocate for accessible education, Sophie has already been supporting Leonard Cheshire with its international work, fronting a month long BBC Radio 4 Appeal for inclusive education in Zambia in January.

Sophie Morgan
Sophie commented:

‘I’m thrilled to be a new ambassador and can’t wait to work more closely with Leonard Cheshire, particularly on the great work the charity is doing internationally.

‘This year’s International Women’s Day theme, ‘better the balance, better the world’, is extremely apt, not only in terms of gender equality but for vulnerable groups too.

‘Working towards an inclusive world where everyone has equal opportunities and access to their basic rights, such as education, is really important to me.

‘As such, I look forward to continuing my work on Leonard Cheshire’s international Inclusive Education projects to help bridge these gaps.’

Kate Burt, Executive Director for Marketing and Fundraising at Leonard Cheshire, added:

‘We’re delighted to have Olivia and Sophie on-board as ambassadors.

‘Passionate, pioneering and inspirational individuals with lived-experience of disability are invaluable champions for inclusion and we look forward to the impact Olivia and Sophie will have in helping us reach more disabled people.’

Media enquiries

For further information, high res images and interview requests, please contact Erin O’Reilly via erin.o'