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Using music to overcome personal challenges and promote inclusion

Lauren Taylor from Bournemouth is taking part in Parallel London this September – the first ever fully inclusive fun push/run. She shares her motivations for getting involved in her very first challenge event.

Lauren is 21 and lives at Talbot Manor – a residential home for young disabled people in Bournemouth, run by Livability. “It’s really good because we’re like a close-knit family. We live next to Bournemouth University and the people there are so friendly and helpful.”

Talbot Manor is home to 12 young people with physical difficulties and focuses on helping its residents to live as independently as possible.

“I have cerebral palsy and use a wheelchair. My condition affects me physically, particularly my limbs”, says Lauren.

“I first heard about Parallel London when one of the managers here at Talbot Manor asked if I wanted to take part. I’ve never done anything like this before so I was excited and thought I’d give the 5km route a go!”

Inspired by her own personal experiences, Lauren tries to use her love of music to share the important message of inclusivity and to raise awareness around disability.

“I work hard at my passion which is producing my own music. Most of the songs I have written have a story behind them.

“I was being bullied at a previous school and I have had to deal with a lot of things that many people haven’t had to deal with.

[x_blockquote cite=”” type=”left”]”But as I’ve grown older I know that I’m just like anyone else, I just have difficulties and I work hard to overcome them.”[/x_blockquote]

“I wrote one song called ‘Why Did You?’ which is about the time I was bullied. I shared it with Bournemouth University who then invited me to perform it at one of their events.

Listen to Lauren perform her song ‘Why Did You?”

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“It’s a song not only for disabled people but also for anyone that is going through bullying. I wanted to get across that they’re not alone. If they stay strong and tell someone you can get make it out the other side.

“Events like Parallel London are important because they bring people together. You have the opportunity meet new people, both able-bodied and disabled. I’m excited because there’ll be lots of people there. You’ll be able to hear their stories and also share your own so it’s going to be very interesting.”

Join Team Livability at Parallel London

Parallel London will be held on 4 September 2016 at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London. As a proud platinum partner, Livability is offering free charity places.

To book your place, or to find out more about the event and how to get involved, click here.

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