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Volunteers Week: James' Journey

Wednesday 1 June 2022

Tell us about your dyslexia journey

I grew up in the Royal Air force, moving every 2 years, before my diagnosis I was very much struggling in school, I was about 10 years old and living in Cornwall when I got the diagnosis of Dyslexia.

My educators tried to help but ultimately couldn’t handle the extent of my difficulties as they were unequipped. Eventually, after many tough years I wound up a Mark College, a specialist dyslexia school where I spent my final years of school.

The following years in work were also difficult having very few qualifications I worked my way through various jobs gaining experience and showing my real talents but ultimately keeping my dyslexia a secret due to the stigma until I joined Texthelp which made me confident enough to talk about my dyslexia.

Why you decided the become a volunteer?

When I was in school I struggled and even when I grew up and worked I was still worried about the stigma affecting my career so I powered through silently.

Eventually, I joined Texthelp as an Education Development Executive, Texthelp provides assistive software to schools and workplaces such as Read&write, Orbitnote and Equatio. They empowered me to discuss my disability openly and I felt I should advocate for others to do so also and to make sure children are diagnosed as soon as possible, I also want others to have the tools to thrive so I decided to join BDA and spread the word as much as I can.

How you hope to help the BDA in as a volunteer?

I am hoping to encourage others to advocate for dyslexia and improve the education system so no child is left left behind. Via my work and through my voluntary work, I have been asked to join the Technology Advisory Committee and hope I can have an impact on the users of assistive technology.

Find out more about our volunteer network here.