Optalis - Choices for living

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"Nicky is given the confidence boost she needed to step outside of her comfort zone and now there’s no stopping her."

The Optalis Out & About service offers evening and weekend opportunities for adults with learning disabilities. Out & About is a unique and special service, that focuses on supporting customer’s health and wellbeing – by helping people to connect, be active and keep learning.  

Karyn Fowle, Service Manager for Out & About explains:

“With Learning Disability Week around the corner, we have been reflecting on how our service supports sport and inclusion. The sporting activities that we organise have a positive long-term effect on our customers.  From swimming to walking and dance classes – we have seen, first hand, the benefits that introducing a sport can have to overall health and wellbeing.

Nicky’s Story

Nicky has been attending the Learning Disability Day Service for a couple of years. Karyn saw an opportunity for Nicky to try something new and suggested she might like to take up an evening activity through Out & About. Karyn encouraged Nicky to attend Two Left Feet, a fortnightly dance class as she thought she might enjoy the social aspect of the fortnightly dance group and benefit from the physical activity.

Nicky has taken part in 3 Two Left Feet classes to date and is still riding high from this new discovery “It’s fantastic. I have such good fun. Emma (who teaches the class) is lovely – the best ever!”  She admitted, “At first I was nervous about trying something new – but then I thought what am I nervous about!?

Nicky had not attended a dance class before now but has fully embraced this new experience. The classes are high energy and help Nicky to maintain her fitness; she said: “it gets my heart pumping, which is good”. Nicky is already looking forward to next week’s class and catching up with the new friends she has met.

It has given her the confidence boost she needed to step outside of her comfort zone and now there’s no stopping her. She’s already started thinking about the next class that she’s going to start.  

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