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Learning Disability Week 2023: Busting myths about people with learning disabilities


Learning Disability Week 2023 begins today, Monday 19 June. This year, Compassion in Action is supporting Mencap’s mission to show the world the incredible things that people with a learning disability achieve – smashing misconceptions about what people can do and shining a light on the stigma many still face every day.

Here, our volunteer Jack tells his story about his work with our charity and learning new things.

I live in Compassion in Action’s supported accommodation, which means I live independently but that there are carers from Cherish UK who can help me if I need some extra support.

In my flat I like to cook (meat feast pasta is my favourite) and play video games such as ‘Call of Duty’.

I also like to listen to relaxing music by Florence + the Machine, and I am a striker in a local football team.

For work, I am an Operational Volunteer at Compassion in Action, which is a Queen’s Award-winning charity.

I help to move and deliver furniture to people who are in need.

I have learned how to clean the furniture, lift it safely and to be polite and have manners when speaking to clients.

I work across three different sites at the charity, cleaning the office buildings.

I like to have boundaries and to know what is expected of me; that helps me to feel safe and stay motivated.

I work alongside the Operations Supervisor and Driver. We are a team and I feel like I am part of a family. Pam Gilligan, the CEO, has given me a new lease of life.

Some people think that people who have learning disabilities are a different part of society.

I think they need to be kinder and give us more of a chance.

There is always hope for us to learn how to do things when you have the right kind of support and help. The next step of my journey is working towards gaining some qualifications.