Student nurses and paramedics are collaborating with people with learning disabilities in an innovative project in Huddersfield.

People who attend Mencap at Waverley Hall near Huddersfield town centre and the Dark Horse Theatre Company based at the Lawrence Batley Theatre are now involved in teaching sessions for University of Huddersfield students on two courses – the paramedic course and the learning disability nursing course.

Learning Disability Nursing Lecturer Emma Stripe said: “There is an enormous amount of evidence suggesting how people with learning disabilities are reluctant to visit a health professional for many reasons which has a direct link to health inequalities. We intend to break down barriers for all involved and the evaluations of the sessions have proved this a success. 

“Empowerment, inclusion and involvement are core values of health care professions. Here at the University of Huddersfield people with learning disabilities are part of our teaching team and contribute to a wide range of recruitment and teaching and learning activities.

“Our colleagues at Mencap have gained experiences and confidence in developing relationships with health care students on a range of courses and have enjoyed being on campus.”

The Dark Horse Theatre actors have learning disabilities and simulate nursing situations for the students.

The university held a celebration and awarded the people from Mencap and Dark Horse Theatre a certificate and voucher. 

Written by ANDY HIRST who runs his own Yorkshire freelance journalism agency AH! PR ( specialising in press releases, blogging, website content and copywriting.