Boost for disabled

The Access All Areas event is back for 2023.

Aimed exclusively at people in Buckinghamshire who are autistic and/or have a learning disability, it is designed to ensure people are aware of the range of services and support available and to encourage healthy lifestyles and wellbeing.

Currently in Buckinghamshire there are more than 2,400 people with learning difficulties and over 5,000 autistic people, many of whom are not accessing activities or services available to them. The Access All Areas event aims to showcase the fantastic range of services which can help support people who are autistic or have additional needs, to live a fulfilled, independent and healthy life.

Run alongside Buckinghamshire Integrated Care Board this year, Access All Areas will be held in two locations. The first event takes place at The Gateway in Aylesbury on 16 October between 10am-4pm and the second takes place in High Wycombe at the Highcrest Academy on 26 October, at the same times.

Free events are aimed at autistic children, young people, and adults and/or those with a learning disability. Carers, family members, friends and care workers are also encouraged to attend.

Both events will feature information stands and interactive learning activities from charities and services who work to support and promote equality for autistic people and/or those who have a learning disability.

This includes NHS teams who will be promoting health checks that can be done at home. These checks are a way of picking up on health concerns and prevention, helping people stay as healthy as possible.

Other health professionals will be on hand.

There will be designated breakaway areas for anyone needing some time-out and specific quiet hours between 10am-11am and 3pm-4pm.

Angela Macpherson, Chairperson of Buckinghamshire’s Health and Wellbeing Board and Cabinet Member for Adults and Health, said: ‘With over 40 exhibitors from health, care, housing, fitness, social and wellbeing sectors and plenty of hands-on demonstrations, the event is a must for anyone with a learning disability”.

‘If you, a loved one, or a friend can benefit from the Access All Areas event, please come along or encourage others to do so to see what’s on offer. These events are a real must for anyone with a learning disability and their carers so be sure to book your place.’

Dr Sian Roberts, Mental Health and Learning Disability Clinical Director for Buckinghamshire, said: ‘People with a learning disability have worse physical and mental health than people without a learning disability. Our challenge is to close this gap and to reduce the numbers of people who die prematurely from preventable causes.’

‘Access All Areas will showcase the fantastic range of services that is available for people with learning disabilities in Buckinghamshire that can support living and staying well.’

Dr Roberts encourages anyone with a learning disability to have an annual health check to screen for any developing health problems and then be supported to live a healthy lifestyle.

Free Access All Areas tickets can be booked online:
• North Bucks (Aylesbury) 16 October
• South Bucks (High Wycombe) 26 October

For more information on the Access All Areas events, visit the website.