“I didn’t feel I could turn to anyone for support” 

Vijay’s Story

Vijay standing next to a table smiling

“Getting out and about to see friends across London is really important to me but, because I have a learning disability, sometimes travelling and finding my way can be a little overwhelming. A little bit of time and patience from fellow passengers can make the world of difference.

I love to get out and about and I’m really lucky that I have a job I love and lots of friends to go out and see. Like anyone though, London transport can sometimes be a little overwhelming. I also have a learning disability which can make it even tougher at times. I know my way around to lots of places but it can be challenging when I’m going somewhere new.

Recently I was travelling back from a friend’s birthday party in Deptford in south-east London. I was going all the way up to north London – it’s really far! I got a little confused with directions and realised I needed some help finding my way. But, as I looked around the busy station with so many people rushing around, I didn’t feel comfortable at all to stop and ask someone for some help.

It was really overwhelming for me and I started to feel quite distressed. I knew I would be absolutely fine if I could get a couple of minutes of someone’s time, but I didn’t feel I could turn to anyone for support.

Luckily, I could call a friend who helped me figure out the best way to get home and so everything was okay, but I really would have struggled if that hadn’t been the case.

If you see someone looking a little lost within the busy network of London’s tubes and buses, it never hurts to stop and see if they need any help. If someone had reached out to me in that moment, it would have made the world of difference.”