‘At the gig, she was asking me whether I was okay as well, whether I was enjoying myself,' says Jennie. ‘She tries to look after me, even though I’m meant to be looking after her. It’s meant to be a friendship, and it already is between me and Kimberley.’
Concerts and music festivals can be overwhelming, even for the most seasoned of us. The crowds, the long lines and the loud music. Gig Buddies gives people experiences—organising movie nights out, brunches and concerts—that people might not have a chance to enjoy.
‘When I went to the first training day at Gig Buddies, they told me most of the carers only work until nine,’ says Jennie.
‘It means people with a learning disability can’t have a night out. They just never experience it.’
They’d only met once before, at a meetup that Gig Buddies held to introduce new volunteers to their potential buddies. For Jennie, this was a moment that opened her eyes.
‘I had no idea what it was like for her. I’ve never come across anyone with a disability so I didn’t know how they live their lives. Even the first time I met her she just grabbed hold of me and gave me a big hug. I was a bit reserved, but she just put her arms around me and gave me a big squeeze. She wasn’t scared to do that at all...And I was.’