It takes a special athlete to compete with the best in the world in the slalom at the 2022 Beijing Paralympic Winter Games, then return home to take duties with the Para Matilda’s women’s football squad.
But Anderson is a special athlete, whether she is competing in the long jump, throwing the discus or javelin, powering down dangerous slalom runs, or kicking a football– all at international level. Anderson has been a Para Matilda since 2020 with her sights set on this year’s Asia Cup in Australia, the 2024 Paris Paralympic Games and the 2026 Commonwealth Games in Victoria.
Anderson is a participant in the Elite Athlete Program through Sydney Uni Sport & Fitness, and received a scholarship which assisted her to balance her studies and training as a para-athlete.
“The University of Sydney made it so easy to do both. When I went into alpine, I wanted to be a part of the EAP. Everything was so easy and so streamlined compared to before.”
Anderson’s success has prompted her motivation to nurture future athletes in the same light, through her story and experiences. Through her work with Disability Sports Australia, Anderson is at the forefront of helping young athletes with disabilities integrate into para-sports and overcome these barriers.
Following her success at the Winter Paralympics in Beijing, Anderson decided to come back home to her roots – football. Anderson has been a Para Matilda since 2020; a passion she has pursued long and hard.
“Through all my sports, I think this is the most support we’ve ever had,” says Anderson. “To have such incredible support from the girls and everyone behind us, it sends such a powerful message when we finally have female sport being aired”.
To read more about Rae Anderson’s inspirational journey through championing adversity, work in the paracommunity and supporting women in sport continue here.