Ciara Evans – Self Advocate representing Europe
My name is Ciara Evans and I am 30 years old. I live in England. At the moment I live in a rented 2 bedroom flat in Leatherhead, Surrey with my fiancé Mark Lawrence. We moved into our flat in June 2009. We really like living there together.
I have worked for Mencap for 11 years. My first job role within Mencap was working for their employment service Pathway. Pathway help people with a learning disability to find work. I worked at our Sutton office and at our Lambeth office.Currently I work three days a week in Mencap’s Campaigns and Policy team as a Campaigns Assistant. I help to lobby MP’s about issues that affect people with a learning disability.
Over the past year I have been helping to work on our children’s campaign Don’t Stick It, Stop It which aimed to raise awareness of bullying of children with a learning disability.
I also work two days a week in Mencap’s fundraising team as a Celebrity Research Assistant. I help to recruit suitable celebrities to support Mencap. My role involves looking after our celebrity supporters and ambassadors at events such as Jo Whiley, Will Young and The Edge from U2.
My job also involves writing to agents and managers so that we can invite new celebrity supporters to support Mencap through attending events and supporting campaigns.
I think it is important to learn from other countries in terms of people with a learning disability. Some countries will be in front and some countries will be further behind.
Being part of Inclusion International I will be able to learn from other people about some of the positive experiences that they have had and I will be able to share some examples of good practise with the people that I will be working with. I will also be able to raise awareness about learning disability and challenge people’s attitudes.
I studied GCSE French at school and I speak very basic French. I would like to learn different languages and learn about other countries.
I am a good communicator. I use email and phones at work to communicate with my colleagues. I also use the social networking sites Facebook and Twitter so I would be able to stay in touch with people from Inclusion International very easily.I like travelling so I would like to have the opportunity to travel to meetings and conferences.