Peter is a Community Learning Disability Nurse who has dyslexia and is sharing his amazing story for Neurodiversity Celebration Week.

One in five people are dyslexic and dyslexic minds process information differently resulting in both strengths and challenges.

Peter said:

“I was diagnosed with dyslexia when I was about seven, I had one to one support at school, I struggled to spell and read and write and I had speech and language therapy to help me pronounce words.”

Leaving school with no qualifications, with perseverance, he completed his functional skills in maths and English, which is equivalent to a GCSE and completed a Health and Social Care NVQ. Ten years ago, Peter joined our Trust as a support worker, Refusing to let his dyslexia hold him back, Peter then completed a Trainee Nursing Associate apprenticeship, and was qualified as a nurse with a second apprenticeship a year ago.

Peter added:

“Our Apprenticeship Team and UCLan supported me with one to one sessions to help with assignments and I was assessed in a different way. I had a room on my own for exams, because with my dyslexia, if I feel overwhelmed or under pressure queueing with others, I can’t focus or concentrate and access the information in my head in the same way.

I’ve done a further apprenticeship and am now a qualified nurse, I’ve overcome that issue with practical sessions and working as a nurse in the community, I love it, helping people with complex learning disabilities.

When I was younger I never would have thought I’d be able to be doing what I am today as a nurse helping people in the community. But I am, it’s possible with support and I’m considering progressing further.

I have reasonable adjustments, so text on a screen is read to me with software, because I can take the information in better that way. With medication I really take my time to read labels and notes to ensure I make no mistakes. I have software called Grammarly which I use to check my grammar to help with my notes and I can speak my notes too which really helps. On the ward computers there are coloured filters I can use on the screen to help me read so it’s more accessible than reading off a white background. They help me read in a straight line, rather than losing my place.”

Peter concludes:

“My manager really supports me I’ve never felt judged at work and I’ve always been supported. I want to tell all dyslexic children that anything is possible.”