Each month we feature an inspirational individual or team who overcome barriers to make a real difference in their communities. This month we feature Marcus Bliss who’s innovative approach to promoting physical and mental wellbeing during the pandemic landed him a place on the Dimensions Coronavirus Learning Disability and Autism Leaders’ List.
Staying connected and staying fit
The wonders of technology have helped Marcus stay connected with his support worker during isolation; he’s shared his keep fit routines, mapped his daily walks and even got the arm exercises in with a virtual drumming session.
You probably share something in common with Marcus – he loves good food and ice cream…
But he knows too much is bad for him, and when the country went into self-isolation he started thinking of new ways to stay healthy and motivated.
Away from his usual gym sessions Marcus had to create his own keep fit community.
With support, he set up WhatsApp, Zoom and even an app to map his walks.
He joined his family and a local friend on daily walks, even going on some by himself.
He joined a program of Zoom sessions set up by the day centre he used to attend.
He messaged his support worker and family so they could also cheer him on virtually.
By sharing his success, Marcus stayed motivated and happy.
“Myself and my colleagues love it that Marcus is being very proactive and has taken a lead on his own life.”
A talented musician
Keeping fit and healthy isn’t Marcus’s only passion. He’s also a talented musician.
He is part of a band called The Coasters and used his skills in an online talent show his day service hosted.
“Marcus is missing playing with his friends in the band…I have encouraged him in keeping the music going in lockdown and a drumming Zoom session was both huge fun and a success.”
Some motivation from Marcus
“I really enjoy walking and mapping my walks on my phone. It is really easy to download the app, you will enjoy the exercise and fresh air, plus it is fun to see on the app a map of your walk.”
The Coronavirus Learning Disability and Autism Leaders’ List is produced by Dimensions in partnership with Learning Disability England and VODG. It is an adapted version of the annual Learning Disability and Autism Leaders’ List.
Follow @DimensionsUK and #CovidLeadersList to stay up to date.
*Quotes have been taken from him nomination