“We want the UK to be the best place for people with a learning disability to live happy and healthy lives.” That is Mencap’s new vision which is part of the exciting new five-year Big Plan. 

After months of conversation, Mencap has launched their new Big Plan. The plan explains what we are going to do and how we want to change the world of learning disability. As part of the Big Plan, we genuinely want to make sure this project is led by people with a learning disability. 

We want to see big changes in Society, and we know we cannot do this alone. Mencap plans to work with other people and organisations in three ways: with people with a learning disability, with communities and with Society by campaigning alongside people with a learning disability.

Currently, I am the Big Plan Engagement Lead here at Mencap. I’ve been in this role for eight months and I am loving every second of it. A huge part of my role is talking to and hearing from people with a learning disability from all communities about Mencap’s new Big Plan, to make sure we are including the voices of people with a learning disability. 

The Big Plan is so important because Mencap is on a new journey and we really want to make sure people with a learning disability are a part of it. I’m really proud to be involved in this new era. 

We know there is still so much to do so that people with a learning disability have the same rights as everyone else and are treated equally. The Big Plan means that Mencap will be working in a different way to help people with a learning disability to make this happen.

Unfortunately, there are still barriers and negative attitudes towards people with a learning disability. Our 75th anniversary is in October and Mencap’s Big Plan is at the heart of it – this is for the UK to be the best place for people with a learning disability to live happy and healthy lives. ​

There is no better time to set a bold new course and Mencap’s new Big Plan will bring positive change. More people with a learning disability will have their voices heard. This is an exciting time in Mencap’s history.

To learn more about Mencap’s new Big Plan, visit: www.mencap.org.uk 

About Ciara Lawrence 
Ciara Lawrence is a well-known learning disability campaigner. She has written for The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and The Independent.