Learning Disability Week 2019: Joseph’s blog

17 June 2019

Joseph Sullivan is a resident at Sanctuary Supported Living’s Nickleby Road in Chelmsford. To mark Learning Disability Week 2019, Joseph has written about his love for sport and how it is a big part of his life.

Joseph in his teams football shirt

I have always liked playing sports and played a lot of them at school. I didn’t continue all of them but I still play football regularly.

I play football on Tuesdays and Saturdays for Maldon Saints. I have played for them for roughly four years and I love going. We have tournaments once a month from September until May which is fun. I really enjoy playing football because I get to meet new people and I have made friends through playing for the club so it is a good way to socialise. I also like learning new skills and improving my playing.

I was given my kit when I joined and it is my responsibility to look after it and wash it after each practice or match. It is important that I do this as I have to look presentable for when we play matches. I don’t find the training too hard because it is fun. We spend time warming up so that we look after our bodies while we play and don’t get injured. At football practice we also do drills, practice penalties and have practice matches which are fun because we get to play against our friends.

I also like to go swimming in Braintree gym on Tuesdays. I go with my friends and we usually go swimming first and then go to the gym after. The best bit is swimming underwater as this is something I really enjoy. I also like to see how long I can hold my breath for. In the gym I like to use the cross-trainer, the weights and medicine balls as well as lots of other equipment. I pay for membership to the gym and I really enjoy going.

Another sport I play a lot is snooker and pool. I often play it at the pub with my friends from the scheme while watching football. I also like to play snooker at City Bowl in Chelmsford and at my mum’s house when I go to visit her. I find this is more of a social game to play with friends while relaxing and it’s not as tiring as football or the gym. I’m not too bad at it but my friend Daniel is the best.

Learning Disability Week is an annual campaign by Mencap to raise awareness of issues around learning disabilities. This year it runs from Monday 17 to Sunday 23 June and the theme is sport and inclusion.

For more information about our disability services, see our disability page or read our Life stories.

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