15-year-old Portfield School student, DJ, represented England in the Commonwealth Powerlifting Championship in Canada, winning four medals in total.
Powerlifting is a strength sport that consists of three lifts: squat, bench press, and deadlift.
DJ won a bronze medal for squat, a silver medal for bench press, a bronze medal for deadlift, and a further bronze medal overall for her weight category.
In total, DJ lifted an impressive 232.5kg, weighing just under 67kg herself.
In order to get to Canada, DJ needed to meet a fundraising target of £2,000, which she successfully achieved with the help of match funding from Autism Wessex. DJ then spent her summer break training for the event, before returning to Portfield School for the new school term.
Siún Cranny, CEO of Autism Wessex, said;
“DJ is a remarkable young person who faces daily challenges due to her autism, but this does not hold her back. Competing at a national level is no mean feat for anyone. DJ is an inspiration to all of the students at Portfield School and we hope other children with autism. I hope that DJ, the students at Portfield School and every young person with autism will continue to push the boundaries of what is possible."