Rising star Sam Bird has announced his backing to the halow charity in 2011. The GP2 driver will carry the halow care logo on his race suit and his car over the course of the forthcoming season.

He will be racing in the series for British team iSport International, the current GP2 Asia championship winners. Bird enjoyed a promising first year in the series in 2010, finished fifth in the championship and was rewarded with a test with the Mercedes GP Formula One team at the Young Driver Test in Abu Dhabi.

The partnership between Bird and halow comes after he met with one of the charity's founders Richard Meins. The charity, based in Guildford, supports young people aged 16-35 with learning difficulties. Sam isn't the only motorsport personality to back the charity, with Damon Hill OBE a patron.

Bird said: “I’ve heard a lot about the great work halow does to help these young people find a degree of independence. There is support during their school years, but after that, there was very little help before halow.  I’m looking forward to seeing their work at first hand.  They don’t receive government support and so I will use my best endeavours to help their fund raising efforts.”

Yvonne Hignell, halow's Director said: “For some of us moving into our own homes or going somewhere new can seem daunting but for a young person with a learning disability it can be a real challenge. The support of a Buddy can make all the difference and enable these young people to do many things that we take for granted. We are very grateful to Sam for all his support and for helping to raise awareness about what we do to help these young people live independent lives.”