SHINE! Learning Disability Wales Annual Conference 2014

On 25 November Learning Disability Wales hosted their annual two day conference in Newport.

The theme this year was to focus on reaching their potential and celebrating achievement and success in the lives of people with a learning disability.

Big Lottery WalesThere was a lively mix of interactive and information workshops, speakers and drama looking at topics such as:

  • ways children, young people and adults can reach their potential
  • what services can do to help everyone reach their potential
  • how people can achieve in employment and learning
  • how families and communities can support children, young people and adults to reach their potential
  • how inclusion empowers people to reach their potential.

Julian Hallet (Wales Regional Manager) and Simon James (Employment Development Officer Wales) were delegates and they had the opportunity to deliver two workshops on WorkFit Wales. The workshop highlighted the success of the project and the plans for the future.

Two WorkFit candidates were also able to attend. Gareth and Alex had both secured and completed a work experience placement with Cardiff School of Optometry and Vision Sciences. They presented their experience of working at the School of Optometry and answered questions from the audience.


“Julian and Simon contacted me and asked me questions about work, who I am, what I would like to do and where I would like to work in the future.

We met up and had a chat, we talked about the interview I had done at the Optometry clinic in the summer and then Simon and Julian gave me some questions to answer for the Conference, (Shine! Learning Disability Wales Annual Conference 2014). We were going to do a pretend interview in front of others in a workshop.

I wrote out the answers to the interview questions so I would be ready.

Don’t forget to smile, say hello, look at the interviewers face and shake hands before and after the interview.

I thought I did well at the Conference and felt proud of myself afterwards, I would like to do it again.” 


“My name is Alexander. Last week I help in workshop about interviews and jobs. I helped with Julian and Simon and my best friend Gareth too.

I have to remember when I have my interview for the Optometry Clinic. I had to write my answers for questions. I had to learn them with my mum.

I was very nervous to my workshop. I felt panicky and nervous. I sat at the front of the room with people watching me. Simon ask me my questions. I answer them and people clap when I finished. I felt proud and important of myself. My mum she is so proud of me and Julian and Simon Gareth and Sian too. I love workshops. I had lovely lunch with curry and fish and potatoes and broccoli and gravy and bread roll and butter. It was delicious.

I like to show my interview again for people.

Any more questions please. I can help you with interviewing and thank for listening to me.”