Volunteer Stories

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Rodney and Ryan's Story

Positive Futures is the leading local charity for people with a learning disability, acquired brain injury or autistic spectrum condition. Our aim is to transform the future of the people we support. We do that by enabling people to realise their hopes, dreams and ambitions. Our volunteers help us to do that.

Rodney Johnston has been supported by our Magherafelt Supported Living Service for over 15 years. He is supported by Ryan O’Neill, just one of our fabulous volunteers. Rodney and Ryan’s story illustrates how volunteering can help the people we support to be involved in their local community and live life as fully as possible. 

Rodney first met Ryan in January 2013 after our volunteer matching process was used to ensure they shared the same interests. To begin with, they met up once a week, building their relationship a little more each time they met. Rodney was really keen to start going to the local gym but needed support to do this. Ryan arranged for Rodney to have an induction at Greenvale Leisure Centre and since then Rodney and Ryan have been attending the leisure centre weekly. 

Rodney loves his time in the gym with Ryan and enjoys telling people about their friendship. He greatly values the male company, especially as he and Ryan have so much in common.  Rodney loves going on the rowing machine and Ryan is able to keep Rodney right when it comes to using the weights and other equipment. 

Rodney says: “Ryan is good craic and we love talking about sport, especially Liverpool FC!”

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