Today, Harvey Price has announced that he will be taking up a new role as Ambassador for the UK’s leading learning disability charity, Mencap.
Harvey plans to use his new position as Mencap Ambassador to act as a role model to young people with a learning disability and educate the general public about learning disability to help tackle stigma and online bullying.
Speaking on Good Morning Britain this morning, his mother Katie Price made the announcement, with more details about how Harvey will be helping Mencap to change the lives of people with a learning disability in the UK to come.
There are 1.5 million people in the UK who have a learning disability, who are often not treated like equals and face stigma and discrimination every day of their lives. People with a learning disability are seven times more likely to feel lonely, are twice as likely to be inactive and die on average two decades younger than the general population. Almost one in three young people with a learning disability spend less than one hour outside of their homes on a typical Saturday.
Speaking of his new role as Mencap Ambassador, Harvey Price says:
“I am so happy to be a Mencap ambassador. I want to do good things with the charity like stop online trolling and be a voice for young people like me. I can’t wait!”
Edel Harris, Chief Executive of the learning disability charity Mencap, said:
“We are delighted to welcome Harvey Price as our Ambassador. Harvey is already doing some great work to tackle online bullying and raise awareness of what life is like when you have a learning disability.
“We are pleased to be working with him to help increase the visibility of people with a learning disability across the media and society to help transform attitudes and to do our bit to ensure that the UK is the best place in the world to live for people with a learning disability.
“We look forward to unveiling our exciting plans with Harvey very soon.”
Harvey’s mum Katie Price said:
“Now Harvey is 18, he is becoming a man and growing in confidence and independence. It has been Harvey’s dream to be a role model to young people with complex needs across the UK, and to use his profile to raise awareness.
“I am thrilled that Harvey has become an Ambassador for Mencap. Mencap does fantastic work campaigning against inequalities, supporting people to live the lives they want to and bringing about change in attitudes towards people like my son. I am so proud to see him take on this role and I can’t wait to see what he will achieve with Mencap.”
People with a learning disability are also one group who has been hit hardest during the coronavirus pandemic. Seven in 10 have seen their social care support stopped at a time when they needed it most. Shockingly, people with a learning disability are dying with coronavirus at six times the rate of the general population.
Mencap is currently campaigning for all people with a learning disability to be prioritised for the vaccine and is calling on the Government to invest in the right support in the community so all people with a learning disability can get the support they need to lead independent and fulfilling lives.
Price, now 18, was born with Septic Optic Dysplasia, Prader-Willi syndrome, autism and a learning disability. His documentary, BBC One’s Katie Price: Harvey and Me, which follows Harvey and his mum during a crucial year in his life as he turns 18, won widespread praise from viewers.
Katie Price: Harvey and Me was broadcast on BBC One on Monday 25 January 2021 and is now available to watch on BBC iPlayer.
For further information or to arrange an interview with a Mencap spokesperson or case study, please contact Mencap’s media team on:
- 020 7696 5414 (including out of hours).
Notes to editors
There are approximately 1.5 million people with a learning disability in the UK.
Mencap works to support people with a learning disability, their families and carers by fighting to change laws, improve services and access to education, employment and leisure facilities.
Mencap supports thousands of people with a learning disability to live their lives the way they want.
For advice and information about learning disability and Mencap services in your area, contact Mencap’s freephone Learning Disability Helpline on 0808 808 1111 (10am-3pm, Monday-Friday) or email email@example.com.
What is a learning disability?
- A learning disability is a reduced intellectual ability which can cause problems with everyday tasks – for example shopping and cooking, or travelling to new places – which affects someone for their whole life
- Learning disability is not a mental illness or a learning difficulty, such as dyslexia. Very often the term ‘learning difficulty’ is wrongly used interchangeably with ‘learning disability’
- People with a learning disability can take longer to learn new things and may need support to develop new skills, understand difficult information and engage with other people. The level of support someone needs is different with every individual. For example, someone with a severe learning disability might need much more support with daily tasks than someone with a mild learning disability.