Stories of Change

Because of Hijinx...

Catrin's story.

Catrin joined Hijinx in 2015. Before this she found making friends difficult and had never made any real friendships. She often felt isolated and suffered from anxiety and depression and her learning disability made her feel that she didn’t fit in.

One day, Catrin’s mum went to an event at Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff where she saw groups of young people with learning disabilities, similar in age to her daughter, who were chatting and getting food in the bar. She discovered they were Hijinx actors rehearsing for their latest performance and went home and persuaded her daughter to go to the show. Catrin came out of the show inspired, excited and desperate to join Hijinx. She wrote a letter to the lead actor, and despite living two hours away from Cardiff, her parents made the commitment to drive her to the weekly Hijinx workshops.

Catrin loved it right from the start. She started to make friends and learn new skills. On stage she blossomed and gave mesmerising performances that surprised the Hijinx staff and her parents. Her mum was delighted.

In 2018, Catrin was chosen to represent Hijinx on an international tour. It was the first time she had been on an aeroplane and travelled without her parents. Since then, she has received paid acting work and travelled to over six countries as a part of a global touring show.

As a result of her work with Hijinx and the support she received from social services, Catrin made the decision to live independently a year ago.

“She found something she really enjoyed. Up until then she never had. She wanted to go every week. Hijinx is something that makes her happy. Her confidence has grown.” A Parent

(All of the above quotes are real and come from Hijinx actors, participants and their parents. In the interests of protecting individuals’ identities Catrin is a composite character.)

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