Learning Disability Week 19th - 25th June
Posted by Francis Whitehead on June 19, 2023
The 19th to the 25th June is Learning Disability Week. Organised by Mencap, the aim is to “show the world the incredible things that people with a learning disability can achieve, smash misconceptions about what people can do, and shine a light on the stigma many still face every day.”
What is a learning disability?
You may not be aware of the definition of what a learning disability is and how it can impact someone's daily life. It is important not to get a learning disability confused with a learning difficulty (such as dyslexia) as a learning difficulty does not affect your intellect or IQ. There are many different types of learning disability, all of which can affect someone in different ways. A learning disability can range from mild, to moderate or severe, however many people with a learning disability can live an independent life, which is where Learning Disability Week comes in!
Those of us with a learning disability can find it harder than others to learn, communicate and understand, which can significantly impact our life.
Support may be needed for everyday tasks we take for granted such as shopping, traveling, and cooking.
According to a study from learningdisabilities.org.uk, There are 1.4 million people in the UK with a learning disability. Charities like Mencap work to support people with a learning disability as well as their families and carers.
The theme for this year is myth-busting, challenging the perception of learning disabilities and showing the world that the sky’s the limit!
A survey by Mencap showed that 42% of people had not seen anyone with a learning disability in the media in the last year. But the Mythbusters are planning to change that as they challenge wrong ideas about learning disability and campaign for change.
You might have heard of some of these Mythbusters, as this year’s list includes rock popstar Daniel Wakeford, previously seen on Channel 4’s The Undateables.
Daniel wants to bust the myth that people with learning disabilities cannot perform on stage or be in relationships, and he does both!
Daniel has autism and a speech and language disorder, but he doesn’t let that hinder his entertainment career.
Another Mythbuster is model Ellie Goldstein, who has made history as the first person with Down’s Syndrome to feature on the front cover of Vogue. In an inspiring interview, she says “I feel lucky to be seen as a role model. I want to show you can achieve anything if you really want to – never give up on your hopes, dreams, and aspirations. My disability never stops me.”
Harvey Price is another mythbuster. Harvey has Prader-Willi Syndrome, Septo-Optic Dysplasia, and autism but he is currently enjoying his first years of college and wants to prove to those with a disability that further education isn’t an impossibility.
Supporting those with learning disabilities
According to a survey done by Mencap, over 4 in 10 people with learning disabilities reported that they did not go out in the past month because they were worried due to a lack of support and bullying.
This is why it’s important to help someone with a learning disability by listening to them, supporting them and spending time with them, most importantly helping them feel happy and included. Ability Superstore has some fantastic ways to share the fun here.
4 in a Row
This classic game of 4 in a Row is a firm favourite of many and is an excellent way to spend time with someone with learning disabilities. If they’ve never played before, they will be able to quickly catch onto the strategy of successfully landing 4 counters in a row and get a great sense of accomplishment when they win.
Giant Print Playing Cards
This high-quality supersized pack of playing cards is an essential for endless fun. Games like Snap and Go Fish can be the ideal catalyst for amusement and entertainment, and it’s perfect to help those with learning disabilities understand and engage in traditional card games. A great way to foster socialization and build skills.
Cuddle Owl Blanket Comforter
This Cuddle Owl Blanket Comforter is the perfect companion for anyone with learning disabilities, with its soft plushness and welcoming appearance making anyone feel loved when you’re not there.
What can I do to help?
During this year’s Learning Disability Week, you can help by showing your support for people with learning disabilities by conquering the perception and stigma behind them and letting them know that they can achieve anything they put their minds to!
Get in Touch
If you have any questions or inquiries about how to further help and support anyone with learning disabilities, please do get in touch. Ability Superstore will be more than happy to help!