For Isaiah Williams, the Commonwealth Youth Games is not just about the thrill of competition.
Of course, representing Trinidad and Tobago for the first time is a huge honour, but Isaiah is also determined to promote acceptance and inclusivity.
The 17-year-old sprinter faces unique challenges as he is affected by cerebral palsy which impacts the muscles on the right side of his body.
These physical differences might seem daunting to some, but for Isaiah, they are just one aspect of his life.
"With my disability, my handshake is affected, making it difficult for me to hold things” explained Isaiah.
“It also affects my speech and my ability to walk normally, but I would like people to know that I am a good person – I enjoy hanging out with friends like most other kids my age.”
Isaiah recognises that representing his country on the national team is a tremendous opportunity.
“For me, this has been a life changer –my first time on a national team, staying at hotels and just the whole experience of interacting with other athletes,” said Isaiah.
“On the other side it gives the exposure for athletes and people with disability to the greater populace of Trinidad and Tobago which can help us to feel more included.
“I am willing to try my best to represent my country and make my family and myself proud while hoping to be a role model for other people with disabilities.”
Isaiah is excited to share his homeland with athletes from all over the world and is looking forward to them experiencing the warmth and hospitality of the dual-island Caribbean nation.
“We may be a small nation, but we are very welcoming and we will make all athletes coming here feel at home. I'm most looking forward to meeting new people from other countries and experiencing their cultures.”
As an aspiring role model for other individuals with disabilities, Isaiah emphasises the importance of continuous learning and progress. "There is always something new to learn, and there's always something more to accomplish once you are willing to work towards it," he says.
Isaiah's drive and determination serves as an inspiration - reminding us that embracing diversity and breaking barriers can lead to a brighter, more inclusive world for everyone. As he aptly puts it, "Enjoy the experience" – a message that resonates far beyond the realm of sports.