To provide Young Adults who have a learning disability the opportunity to socialise and form natural friendships with their Peers, in a safe, supported environment.
In 2006 we became aware of a project run in Ayrshire by The Hansel Foundation Fairway Project, providing a Peer Mentoring service to Young Adults with a learning disability. We recognised that although a lot of young adults were supported adequately throughout the day by adult support services, their evenings and leisure time was often spent with older adult carers or family, therefore hugely missing out on the important learning curve that having a peer friendship brings. The transition through adolescence to adulthood is a tough time for most young adults, but even tougher if you have no one to confide in or learn from who is going through the same experiences, natural personal development is hindered, resulting in lower self-confidence, self-belief and independence.
Fairway Fife is a registered charity and operated by an independent Management Board. We recognise that all people regardless of ability or disability have their own unique gifts and strengths to contribute positively to their own community. We aim to achieve our goals by recruiting and professionally supporting, committed volunteers of a similar age (Peer Mentors), to help our Members strive to live their dreams through accessing the everyday community experiences that non-disabled Mentors will take for granted. This could be as simple as going bowling, shopping, clubbing or just 'hanging out' with a pizza and a dvd- chatting about everyday issues most people will face, in a safe, natural environment.
Other benefits gained are the many opportunities available to Peer Mentors, such as completing Youth Achievement Awards, Saltire Awards, Points towards Degree courses etc. - not to mention, making new friends and having fun-all for free!!