James picks up new skills with Cedar

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A LARNE man is celebrating after successfully completing a specialised training course with the Cedar Foundation.

James McCullough was one of nine trainees to receive OCN accredited peer support training, a qualification which allows participants to gain a better understanding on how to practically support people with disabilities.

And they were recognised for their achievement at the Cedar Foundation’s Training and Resource Centre in Belfast recently, marking the end of a summer programme of activities for people with disabilities.

Over 70 people attended the programme with highlights including ‘Be Safe Stay Safe’, first aid training, classes in sign language and deaf culture, cookery, flower arranging and jewellery making as well as visits to W5, the Ulster Museum and Botanic Gardens. It was another successful year with many people coming to learn new skills and enjoy the social activities.

The achievements and commitment of trainees were celebrated with a certificate presentation and barbecue. Two larger than life Papier-mâché characters; gold medal Olympian Mary Peters and the world famous footballer George Best, made a special appearance and congratulated participants. The Cedar Foundation would like to thank the Beat Initiative for supplying the carnival heads.

Speaking about the programme, James said: “The whole experience was really enlightening; learning what disability means, learning about labels put on people with disabilities and people’s attitudes and how they have changed.

“I really enjoyed the training and I got so much out of it.”

The Cedar Foundation delivers a range of servicesthat enable children and adults with disabilities to be fully included in their communities.