In May, we introduced Holly, a 20-year-old young lady from Coventry who we have the pleasure of walking alongside on part of her journey towards adulthood and independence.
Then she had just completed her first challenge on ‘Adventure Holly’ to visit Coventry city centre and navigate her way through shopping areas, bus stops and a general feeling of anxiety about doing new things without her parents.
Holly, who has a learning disability, told us she wants to one day go into town on her own to meet her friends. So Grapevine’s Naomi is helping her lay the foundations for that first trip and hopefully many more positive experiences to follow.
Since the May expedition, Holly and Naomi have returned to the city centre but this time Holly made the bold step of meeting Naomi at Coventry Cathedral.
Money and vouchers were used to buy a discounted lunch, in spite of a long queue at the till, and the ladies also paid a visit to Bodycare and Poundland. Holly located Poundland herself from memories of previous trips to town with her parents, treating herself to a new bright red lipstick from the shop to celebrate!
But now Holly has gone even further in her quest for independence.
After completing her own bus pass application form and realising it was missing supporting information from her doctor, she took the initiative to visit the surgery by bus, ask the receptionist for help and returned both the evidence and application form to the Post Office where she asked that her letter was weighed to check she had the right postage. Every step by herself.
Add jogging around her neighbourhood to keep fit to the list and it is clear Holly’s confidence is growing every day.
“Holly seems to be finding her voice and discovering herself. Building community confidence seems not just to be about meeting her friends in town, but also about building the confidence to do things that increase her sense of wellbeing and happiness,” says Naomi.
The next chapter of Adventure Holly will involve visiting Coventry’s creative quarter Fargo Village so that opportunities to attend their events and festivals can be opened up.
Holly just wants to see and do things like other young people, rather than stay at home most of the time.
Holly’s adventure is being made possible through our Help and Connect project which aims to give local people with a learning disability the opportunities, connections and confidence to create building blocks towards a better, more independent future.
Click here and select the ‘Activities’ tab to find out more about the current scope of our work.