Winchester Go LD celebrated their AGM on Wednesday evening with a gameshow hosted by adults with learning disabilities.
2 panels of contestants, the Dogs and the Cows raced to identify moments of achievement and funny stories from Go LD’s year of events. Chair of the Trustees Kevin Stevens commented “We were delighted that the Mayor joined the game show and the audience were thrilled she was on the winning side!”
“It was lovely to attend an AGM with so much laughter! Go LD are an exclusive group of people who are committed to helping ensure that people with learning disabilities have the same rights, opportunities and quality of life as everyone else.” Said Mayor Cllr Eleanor Bell.
To the audience of 60 members, parents and supporters at the Discovery Centre Performance Hall, Kevin outlined his vision for the future of the charity. “Approximately 2.16% of adults in the UK are believed to have a learning disability (Royal Mencap) and for the Winchester district that could mean there are as many as 1900 adults with learning disabilities. We desperately want to reach out to those adults and their families who may need extra support, friendships and advice. I know through my own experiences with my son Teddy that negotiating the benefit and support system can be a huge ordeal and our concern is for people who do not have family or someone to help. Many of our members are not known to the local authority or do not qualify for support, so there is no one to help. When they are suddenly cut off from any income due to a change in system or overlooking an important letter, the contribution Go LD staff can make is invaluable. It is these one-offs and the added extras that make our work life changing”.
Asked what appealed about the charity, Paul Jessop, temporary General Manager, explained there is a sense of community around Go LD that is exceptional today. “This community spirit is vital as people with a learning disability can feel very isolated and have fewer chances to take part in leisure or social activities. Go LD create these opportunities for members through being based at the Discovery Centre so members can meet for lunch or coffee in the Cafe; the Go LD office door is always open if someone has a problem; members keep fit every Saturday at River Park Leisure Centre at Low Level Circuits and we host weekly social groups at the Discovery Centre. We empower our members to feel good about themselves.”
Janet Chierchia MBE stood down as Treasurer after 40 years with Go LD and Winchester & District Mencap. Janet was thanked for her contribution to changing the scope of services for learning disabilities and her commitment and enthusiasm for the charity and presented with a large bouquet of flowers from one of the members. Janet will remain a Trustee of Go LD and Mark Chapman was voted in as Treasurer.
Emma Snagge Winchester Go LD 01962 873608