I first heard about Parallel London through some peers in the Learning Disability community and we were hooked from the start. As a charity, Walsingham Support celebrates each individual’s ability rather than focusing on their disabilities and Parallel London offered the same approach. The people that I support love hustle, bustle and music, so a large event like this was always going to be an exciting experience for them to be part of.
We supported three individuals to take part last year – Tim and Tony in wheelchairs, and, David, who although not in a wheelchair, struggles to walk. That said, he does have a very impressive collection of swimming medals. Tim and Tony took part in the Super Sensory race, which was ideal for people without mobility and with limited vision. The race invited participants to take part in multi-sensory experiences to engage different senses along the route, which they loved. David took on the 1km fun run, completed it and relished the experience; it was the furthest he had ever walked and he has the medal to prove it.
The feedback from last year means that this year we have six individuals taking part, five guys and a girl, with five Walsingham Support staff there to help them on their way. Each has differing needs and abilities, but because the event is so inclusive it’s not an issue. They will all get to take part together, which is a wonderful opportunity and a great shared experience.