Learning Disability Week
In 2015, Mencap surveyed over 300 18 to 35-year old’s with a learning disability to find out how they felt. Of these, 18% felt alone and cut off from people, and more time spent outside was the wish of 49% of those surveyed.
Sport and physical activity have been shown to reduce loneliness and isolation across all of society, however there are also the added benefits of improved health and well-being, great inclusion into society and empowerment for those that have a learning disability.
They are also great levelers between people with and without a learning disability in improving attitudes, blowing away stereotypes portrayed in the media and challenging negative views towards people with a learning disability.
So, whether you have a learning disability or not, if you know someone with a learning disability or not, we think the theme of Sport and Inclusion for this year’s Learning Disability Week should be embraced by everyone!
What is a Learning Disability?
The answer is that it’s different for every person who has one. But there are some things that are true for everyone with a learning disability, and some common (and not so common) conditions that will mean you have a learning disability.
A learning disability is a reduced intellectual ability and difficulty with everyday activities – for example household tasks, socialising or managing money – which affects someone for their whole life.
People with a learning disability tend to take longer to learn and may need support to develop new skills, understand complicated information and interact with other people.
The level of support someone needs depends on the individual. For example, someone with a mild learning disability may only need support with things like getting a job. However, someone with a severe or profound learning disability may need full-time care and support with every aspect of their life – they may also have physical disabilities.
People with certain specific conditions can have a learning disability too. For example, people with Down’s syndrome and some people with autism have a learning disability.
It’s important to remember that with the right support, most people with a learning disability in the UK can lead independent lives.
How Can I Support Learning Disability Week?
If you know someone with a learning disability and you have the time (and the energy!) to take up a new activity, then find out together what activities are available to you locally. You can also offer your support via Mencap who are encouraging as many people as possible, with and without a learning disability, to get involved in inclusive sporting activities in their local communities.
To find out what is happening around the country, click here.
You can also find out more about their other fundraising and awareness activities that include the Hyde Park 5k/10k run, their Round the World Challenge and being part of #TeamMencap for the 2020 Virgin London Marathon!
The founder of MyLiferaft is Nicola Murgatroyd. Her daughter Faith had Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus so Nicola found herself in the role of a parent carer. Together they faced an uphill struggle managing Faith`s different care needs. Not one to sit around grumbling about this, Nicola created MyLiferaft for the benefit of everyone caring, or being cared for.
`My personal experiences gave me a first-hand insight into the problems and challenges faced by people who live with a long-term condition. I realised that gaps in shared information across health and social care existed. However, there are ways to make life easier for everyone whatever their circumstances, and that`s what we have created with MyLiferaft – a tool which helps you to let others know what you want`.
Try our Free Account now to discover the many ways in which MyLiferaft can help support those with a learning disability and their care-circle. If you are caring for someone you can set up and manage an account for them which allows both you and them to be fully involved i.e. filling in information together can be a great way to get a conversation going. Other benefits of MyLiferaft include:
- Telling others the best way to interact to reduce your levels of stress
- Let others know how to support you, what you like and don’t like
- Set some reminders so you worry less about forgetting appointments or taking medication
- Try keeping track of your mood
- Keep a record of what works well for you and what doesn’t
- Set yourself some goals and track how you are getting on with achieving them.
- Share your goals with others so they can help you reach them.
- Taking medication? Set a reminder to take it and if you need help, taking it, ordering it, picking it up, let others know.
- Keep a record of meetings/consultations you have with professionals and write down what was discussed so you can refer back to it at any time or share it with others.
- Share information with others e.g. your doctor, family friends
MyLiferaft are excited to be supporting Learning Disability Week and are offering the first 100 carers that sign up for our Newsletter, a FREE Premium Account for life! Visit our website and type the keyword LEARNING into the comments box.
At MyLiferaft, we aim to give you everything you need in once place and this includes where to go for advice, information and support. Our extensive list of resources has a specific section for those with learning disabilities with links through to organisations such as Mencap, The HF Trust & Scope. There is also a full list of resources on a wide range of topics including Bereavement, Mental Health, Autism, Epilepsy, Alzheimer’s & Dementia, Benefit information, Bullying, Going Back to School and various NHS information websites.
Click here to see our full list of Resources.