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What makes you happy?

What makes you happy?

  

Kavita Bowry, Communications and Development Manager with the latest blog post from Share Community (who run the Share Community Garden and Nurseries in Tooting).

Wellbeing and happiness are both wholly subjective terms. But if Share could leave you with one message, that would be that what makes people with learning disabilities and autism happy and fulfilled is no different to anyone else.

It is that simple.

I was reading a research article recently about what makes people with a learning disability happy and satisfied with their lives. The findings of this work spoke volumes to me and confirmed this. For example, it found that:

  • Choice and independence, activities and valuable social roles all made people feel satisfied with their lives;
  • Having staff and family were important to enable people to lead happy, fulfilling lives and to overcome the boundaries that they may experience such as not having enough money or transport;
  • Relationships were important to people and they needed support to manage difficult emotions.
     
  

All of these things are reflected in a number of programmes, initiatives and projects that we run for people with learning disabilities and autism at Share. For example:

  • Our training and advocacy work teaches our students valuable independent life skills, highlighting the importance of choice and giving our students a voice;
  • Our My Community and Me project aims to take learning out of the classroom and into the community, supporting our students with practical training to find out more about the communities within which they live, while educating society in general to have a better understanding of our students’ needs;
  • We run Go Anywhere, Do Anything, a social inclusion project to support our students to go out and about, doing fun things with the help of volunteer social buddies and staff;
  • We operate two social enterprises – Share Nurseries and Share Catering – which provide safe and supported real-life work experience for our students within the community;
  • We have a dedicated wellbeing team that looks after each student’s journey at Share to ensure that each person has the choice to do the things they love, fulfil their potential and live happy, healthy lives.


That is to say, our work focuses on people, not the labels that might be attached to them. Which is what makes Share so special – a place where people can grow, have fun and enjoy life. Isn’t that what we all want?


Share Community is a registered charity that provides training and employment support for disabled adults, including those with learning disabilities, autism, physical/sensory impairments and mental health needs. To find out more about Share’s work or how you can get involved, visit our website at www.sharecommunity.org.uk 

 


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