Hello I’m Georgina and I’m the volunteer choir leader for The Brain Charity choir. I’m 20 years old and I’m a final year music student at Liverpool Hope University. I originate from the Lancashire/Yorkshire border and I chose to study in Liverpool because of its world renowned musical heritage, and after living here for three years it now feels very much a ‘home from home’.
I had a difficult time growing up as I was bullied at school because I was a little bit different, but luckily I found out I had the ability to sing and joined a choir when I was 7 where I made lots of new friends who didn’t care about my disability and were only interested in my singing ability!
I have an inherited condition called Ehlers-Dantos Syndrome, which leads to problems with my joints and muscle weakness. There are several different types of the condition and I’ve lucked out by having three of them! I now use a wheelchair full time to get around as it’s the safest way for me to travel about. I also have dyspraxia and dyslexia, so that can make life as a student quite difficult. Hope University have arranged fully accessible accommodation for me and they are very understanding about my constant hospital admissions and the difficulties I face day-to-day. Unlike school, my fellow university students don’t care about my disabilities and I’ve made some really good friends and have a great social life.
I began volunteering at the charity at the start of my first year at Uni when a call went out for someone to volunteer to lead a new choir and I thought I’d give it a go. The Brain Charity is a very unique charity, it’s warm and welcoming from the minute you step through the door and I never feel the ‘odd one’ out when I’m there. There’s so much positivity and laughter that brings with it a real sense of community and it’s all about leading your life to the full, not being a victim of your circumstance, which for someone young like me is a real boost that helps me to think about the future in a positive way.
I go to as many of the social events at the charity as I can, and my mum and dad (who are also disabled) have become part of the gang too with my mum singing alongside the choir whenever she’s visiting and my dad creating a logo especially for the choir to use on their folders and social media.
The Brain Charity is a happy place to be and I’m glad I got involved!