Each month we feature an inspirational individual or team who overcome barriers to make a real difference in their communities. This month we feature Ciaran Bradley, an inspirational young man who won the Local Communities Award in the Dimensions Learning Disability and Autism Leaders’ List.
In 2020 there’s one blockbuster you shouldn’t miss. In a town in the north west of England, one man is on a mission to make the cinema experience accessible to all…. Starring movie buff Ciaran Bradley, as a determined young man who is uniting the community through film. A heart-warming tale that brings people together. «««««
Introducing Ciaran, he’s 26, has autism and a love for movies. He developed Ciaran’s Autism Friendly Film club after he realised that lots of people didn’t have a warm welcoming environment to watch a film or that some people might not be able to afford the bus fare or cinema ticket. The Film Club is held once a month at the Fairfield and Howley Neighbourhood Project. Ciaran puts a lot of thought into the theme, so for instance March’s film was The Commitments, in honour of St Patrick’s Day.
Ciaran joined the McIntyre Great Communities project in late 2018 and launched his Film club just three months later in January 2019! The Great Communities project connects with adults in the community who have autism or learning difficulties to help them think about their passions and skills.
Since joining Great Communities, Ciaran has shared his experiences with people in the local area, contributing to the voice of local people. He’s attended workshops to enable people with disabilities to thrive in their communities, and has shared his perspective at meetings to help shape the future of social care.
“He is an inspiration to all of us, with his enthusiasm and self-motivation to make a difference and contribute to the people he represents in the local community.” Pete Connor, manager of Great Communities
Alongside his management and facilitation of the film club, Ciaran started volunteering at a café. These helped Ciaran to confirm his personal passions, of customer service and the cinema industries. So he embarked on his own adventure: seeking employment in this sector. And in November 2019 he got his dream job at a local cinema!
“I’m really proud to work at Cineworld as I love films and the team I work with are all brilliant and have helped me lots since I started it brilliant.” Ciaran Bradley
The film club, which now has 30 members, has been fantastic in building general wellbeing and increasing socialising, several friendships have been formed in the film club group. Three members are over the age of 65, creating an intergenerational community of movie-goers!
“I really enjoyed going to film club; it’s brilliant and has got me out of the house and meeting my friends. I enjoy the films Ciaran chooses and like to vote on selecting films on Facebook, and look forward to every month.” Andy, film club member
In December Ciaran was named as one of the 2019 Dimensions Learning Disability and Autism Leaders’ List in the Local Communities category.