Fixer Caitlin McDowell has created a booklet with the help of Fixers to bring able-bodied and disabled students together at her school, encouraging them to communicate both in and outside the classroom.
The 17-year-old from Dumfries felt like she was separated from her friends at school because some of them had disabilities and was inspired to start a Fixers campaign to create more opportunities for students with and without disabilities to get to know each other.
The ‘Be My Buddy’ booklet is a voluntary programme which allows students to find out more about someone who has different needs to them. (View the booklet at the bottom of this page.)
Caitlin’s school, Stranraer Academy, has agreed to use the resource as part of their PSE lessons.
‘It’s fantastic to get recognition and see my resource being used in a good way,’ she says.
‘Working with Fixers has been great. My aim is to eradicate social barriers and I think the booklet will go some way towards doing that.’
The 17-year-old, whose booklet includes classroom activities for pupils, is optimistic that students of all abilities at her school will benefit from her Fixers project.
‘Every young person needs social interaction with their peers, but sometimes for people with disabilities this can be hard and they may end up missing out.
'For someone with a disability, needs like education, care and support are all covered, but they don’t always have a friend of the same age they can spend time with socially.
‘Hopefully this booklet will bring people together in school and solve that problem.
‘We’ve all felt lonely at some point in our lives, so it’s important that we help others who feel they’re on their own.’