Recently members of the Grace Eyre Friendship Group headed down to the much loved Brighton restaurant Donatello, for a delicious meal of Italian treats. Donatello is very generous in offering a free two course meal for four people with learning disabilities every month!
People with learning disabilities tell us ‘we want to have strong and supported relationships: seeing the people we want to, when we want to see them’. This is a great opportunity for members of the group to get together, enjoy some amazing food and spend an afternoon chatting and socialising.
The group were warmly welcomed by friendly and accommodating staff and shown to their table. Everyone had a think about what they wanted to eat and ordered independently –
‘Normally I would have a pizza here but today I’m going to have something different and have pasta’.
‘I like their pizza and pasta.’
Everyone enjoyed tucking in to their meals and were all very happy customers –
‘It is a nice restaurant. I do like coming to Donatellos. I love the parmesan cheese that they have here.’
‘The soup was very good.’
‘That was lovely. I’m saving room for dessert. I’m having tiramisu with cream. Why have tiramisu on its own when you can have it with cream!’
This meet-up happens independently, with members of the group getting the bus or walking to the restaurant and finding each other inside. And people with learning disabilities are growing in confidence too – one person who needed to be supported in the past is now able to come along on their own!
Without the wonderful support from local businesses like Donatello, people with learning disabilities may not have the opportunity to meet with friends, spend time out and about and develop their independence.
You can find out more about the brilliant Donatello here.
Also check out what the Grace Eyre Friendship Group is up to this month here.