My interests outside of Mencap

I'm really interested in Harry Potter. I've got all the books and films - I'm reading The Prisoner of Azkaban at the moment and I've watched the Philosopher's Stone film, and I have the rest of them on BluRay.

Gryffindor are my favourite house at Hogwarts, but I also like Hufflepuff. My favourite characters are the Weasley's and Harry Potter, but I also like Hermione Granger.

Because of this interest I really wanted to go to a Harry Potter exhibition at the House of MinaLima in Soho, London. So in January, I met my friend Amber, who I work with at Mencap, at Elephant and Castle, then from there we got the Northern Line to Leicester Square and walked to Soho. 

When we got to the House of MinaLima we looked around all the different rooms; there were lots of pictures and photos everywhere including some of the letters that you see in the fireplace in the first Harry Potter film, and also the Maurader's Map. 

Amber and I also went to King's Cross Station to see Platform 9 and 3/4, which was great fun.

I bought a few souvenirs on the day, including a pen, some badges and a coaster. I had a really great time.

In April I'm going to go the Harry Potter Studio Tour in Leavesden, also with some of my friends from Mencap. I'm really looking forward to it - I can't wait!

My time at Mencap

On 14 February it was my 23rd anniversary of volunteering at Mencap, so I had a party to celebrate - which was Harry Potter themed, of course! I've really enjoyed my time at Mencap so far. I love meeting new people in the office and I always get on well with everyone. I feel like Mencap is my second family - it's like having lots of brothers and sisters!

I also really enjoy fundraising for Mencap. Last year I took part in the Parallel Run, which I'd like to do again. I raised around £600 for Mencap, and had a great time.

I'm also planning on doing the Hyde Park and Greenwich Park runs later this year, which are 5km in distance. I train with the Mencap Running Group every week, and am hoping to start fundraising for these events for Mencap soon.

I think it's really important for people with a learning disability to explore their local area and pursue their hobbies.

If there was someone with a learning disability who was worried about going out or starting a hobby, I would say go for it and have fun!