Each month we feature an inspirational individual or team who has overcome barriers to make a real difference in their communities. This month we feature Liam Bairstow, best known for his time in Coronation Street, and who has more recently lent his support as an ambassador for this year’s Dimensions Learning Disability and Autism Leaders’ List.
Not for profit support provider, Dimensions, are thrilled to welcome actor and 2019 Sports, Arts and Entertainment Leader – Liam Bairstow – as their celebrity ambassador and one of the judges for the 2020 Leaders’ List.
Liam joins a panel of 17 judges, two thirds of whom have a learning disability and/or autism themselves. They will judge this year’s five categories and select the Young Person’s and Lifetime Achievement Award winners.
Everyone who enters will receive a personalised certificate to celebrate what they have achieved.
Entries and nominations officially open on 1 June for 1 month and anyone who has a learning disability and/or autism is welcome and encouraged to enter or be nominated by somebody else.
This year Dimensions has included an extra category to recognise the challenges people have overcome during self-isolation and the coronavirus.
Liam has shared these kind words about his experience of being a Leader and why he wants lots of people to enter this year’s List…
“The Dimensions Learning Disability and Autism Leaders’ List proves that our disabilities do not limit us. We are performers, activists, athletes and campaigners – and it’s time that society sees and recognises that. We are proud of who we are and of everything we achieve every day.
“To help everyone understand what’s possible when you have a learning disability or autism, we need greater representation in every aspect of life. From politics to arts and sports, we need inspiring role models that everyone can recognise themselves in. And we all need to be given opportunities – we want to contribute, create and inspire; all we need is a chance to do so.
“It’s important that people see positive stories so they can be uplifted and inspired. Everyone has achievements to celebrate and the Leaders’ List gives people with learning disabilities and autism the opportunity to do that. Everyone who enters or is nominated gets a certificate to congratulate them on their hard work, and 40 winners from across the country will get their story shared nationally and invited to a special celebration event.
“I’m proud to be a Learning Disability and Autism Leader, I’m happy my work has been celebrated and I can inspire other people. I hope lots of people enter the Leaders’ List this year so they can share their stories, celebrate their achievements and feel proud of what they’ve done. Everyone with a learning disability and/or autism can enter themselves or be nominated by somebody else. If anybody is thinking that their story isn’t good enough or their achievements aren’t important enough then please don’t – you deserve to be celebrated!
“I’m also proud to be joining the judging panel this year. I’ll be part of a group of 14 judges, over two thirds will have a learning disability and/or autism, and I can’t wait to read all the amazing stories. Helping to choose the winners will be very difficult!
“I want to congratulate everyone who is on the Leaders’ List so far, and look forward to following their achievements. Big or small, we’re all changing the world for the better.”
Entries and nominations for the Learning Disability and Autism Leaders’ List 2020 open at 10am on 1st June and close at 10am on 1st July.
Visit www.dimensions-uk.org/leaderslist to find out more.
Follow @DimensionsUK and #LDALeadersList on social media to keep up to date and join the excitement.