Celebrating a year of meets and matches

Members of The U-Night Group enjoy Meet 'N' Match
Members of The U-Night Group enjoy Meet 'N' Match

A group for people with learning difficulties is looking forward to celebrating a successful year running a course in dating and friendship for its members.

St Annes-based U-Night received £50,000 grant earlier this year from the Health Lottery.

For the last year the group has been providing sex and relationship advice for adults with learning difficulties throughout Lancashire.

Now members are to share their expertise at a conference in Preston next month.

Chairwoman Sue Sharples, said: “The sexual rights of people with learning disabilities have historically been ignored. Often, sexuality only becomes an issue to be discussed when there is a problem.

“Coping with relationships, sexual identity and sexual feelings can be more difficult for people with learning disabilities who might be struggling to understand their emotions and their body.

“We know from experience that people with learning disabilities want their need for friendship and relationships to be part of their support considerations.

“They want more information about sex, sexual health and relationships so they are safer and more confident when they access their communities.’

“Our training programme, called ‘Y be Shy’ aimed to overcome these barriers, reduce vulnerability and enable people to have healthier relationships. We have provided six courses each of which ran over six days, training 90 adults with a learning disability and their supporters.”

To ensure the project’s future, a further 32 people have attended a course to equip them with skills to continue providing sex and relationships classes.

To celebrate the end of this ground breaking project, the group are organising a conference in Preston on November 24 on relationships and sexual health for people with learning difficulties.

It will feature workshops, information stalls and an internationally renowned speaker.

For further information or to book a place contact -07834 695606 or sue@ytraining.co.uk.