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Govia Thameslink Railway has announced that Luton Airport Parkway has partnered with Autism Bedfordshire to cement support between the charity and rail operator.
Fifty Bedfordshire adults with autism will be getting involved in activities at their local railway station.
The new partnership will see the autistic adults meet Station Manager Joe Healy, go behind the scenes at the station to get an insight into operations.
They will also take part in ‘Try a Train’ days, which will give them the opportunity to learn about rail safety.
Other activities will see the adults working alongside an art therapist to create a mosaic for platform 1.
What did the officials say?
Autism Bedfordshire’s Adult Services Manager Sharna Raine said:
“We’re so excited to be working with Thameslink and Joe. Not only will this partnership really help everyone in the local community understand the autistic community, it will also help our members feel part of the community and feel valued. More often than not, they don’t feel part of the community and don’t feel they fit in, but this is an opportunity to show everyone what they can do.”
Luton Airport Parkway and Harpenden Station Manager Joe, who hopes to offer some of the adults work experience, said:
“We’re very excited to welcome Autism Bedfordshire on board as an official station partner, and look forward to working with the group on various projects to enhance the station environment. Stations are at the heart of communities and it’s wonderful to have community involvement.”
The new partnership has been facilitated by the Bedford to St Albans City Community Rail Partnership. CRP Officer Andy Buckley said:
“We’re delighted to welcome Autism Bedfordshire to the Community Rail Partnership. This is the second partnership to be established on the line and we are currently in discussion with other groups who are interested in forming partnerships with Harlington, Flitwick and Bedford.”
GTR’s Community Engagement Officer Andrew Chillingsworth added:
“It’s very important that we have all sectors of the community involved in our stations. Local stations are very much a focal point of the community, so it’s great to have local people involved.”
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This article first appeared on www.railadvent.co.uk
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