This week is Learning Disability Week and a time to raise awareness about Learning Disabilities in the UK. I caught up with Clare Reavey, a mature student who studies BSc Learning Disabilities Nursing and Social Work (Integrated Practice) at the University of Salford.

Have a read of why Clare chose to work in this sector 💭

Hi Clare! Why did you choose to study Learning Disabilities Nursing and Social Work?

I have worked with children and adults with learning disabilities as a support worker for many years. Learning Disabilities Nursing and Social Work seemed like the perfect course for me as it would develop my two motivations: supporting people with learning disabilities and helping children who are disadvantaged by society and their circumstances.

For you, what is the highlight of studying Learning Disabilities Nursing and Social Work?

My favourite thing about the course is feeling that I have found a place where I fit in, where the unfashionable notion of supporting marginalised people is encouraged and essential. 

The course has expanded my knowledge of the depths of discrimination against people with autism and people with a learning disability. My next placement is with a community learning disability team. They have been welcoming and I can’t wait to start.

Where do you want to take your career working with those affected by learning disabilities?

I am open minded about my career. I want to have ten years of being absorbed by work and giving everything I’ve got. I would love to work with children and families if I can develop the skills needed. 

Why is Learning Disability Week an important time to raise awareness?

It is important to celebrate people with learning disabilities every week. The more people are seen as belonging and valued the less stigma there will be. I will be reflecting with gratitude on the people with a learning disability that I know this week.

What advice would you give to students who want to begin studying to work with people who have a learning disability?

My advice to anyone who wants to follow a similar path would be to take the opportunity, it will enrich your life and teach you about yourself and the world.