The importance of friendship and community during Learning Disability Week

Learning Disability Week is well under way, and the theme for this year is the importance of friendships during lockdown.

Many of us have gone weeks and months without seeing friends and family due to the continuing coronavirus epidemic, and feelings of isolation are increasing.

Our friends, family and community have never been more essential.

With many people living with a learning disability unable to see their friends and family, the lockdown may have exacerbated feelings of loneliness but now is the time to celebrate the importance of friendships.

There are 1.5 million people in the UK with a learning disability

#MENCAPFAMILY

This Learning Disability Week (15-21 June) Mencap, the learning disability charity, want to celebrate the friendships that make up their #MencapFamily – and show how important your friends have been during lockdown.

The team at Mencap have been working hard to ensure people can stay connected, feel less lonely and more socially included during this time.

Adapting their programmes, like Gig Buddies, to support people with a learning disability to stay in touch with their buddies during lockdown.

Hosting virtual group socials events, like quizzes and singalongs, online and supported buddies and volunteers to stay in touch via videos calls, phone or even by letter for those who struggle with technology – staying united can help us all during these uncertain times.

BEFRIENDING

Do you want to help a person with a learning disability this week and beyond? Mencap, the learning disability charity, are looking for befrienders to join their service.

You could be united with a person living with a learning disability to help combat loneliness and isolation. All you have to do is contact Mencap on friendships@mencap.org.uk to find out more about befriending and discover what options are available in your area.

This #LDWeek2020 reach out and share the power of friendship.

How are you keeping in touch with your friends this Learning Disability Week? Let the #EnableCommuntiy know on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.