Since starting at Orpheus, Awa’s confidence and self-belief have flourished. Learning to face her fears, she has built resilience to become more independent in every aspect of her life. Often acting as an advocate for disability and an ambassador for Orpheus, she faces the physical and emotional challenges cerebral palsy can bring, while simultaneously supporting others to understand nothing is impossible if you have the right support, a positive attitude and work hard. This has been strengthened with her recent internship at Graeae, a theatre company showcasing the work of deaf and disabled artists.

After completing an intensive week in October, Awa was picked for a 3 month/2 day a week internship starting in January. Awa worked with a mentor and was so successful that her contract was extended to the end of July working 3 days a week. This has not only provided valuable travel training (Awa travelled independently to London), but it has boosted her confidence and given general all round independence skills, encouraging Awa to not only pursue her dream of directing but given her the opportunity to develop the skills she needs in the world of work.

Previously, Awa was selected to attend a short apprenticeship at the BBC in London, giving her the fantastic opportunity to discover how a news team runs, developing her passion for journalism. This is what work experience at Orpheus is all about; giving our students the skills, confidence and experience they need to become young, independent adults who lead happy and fulfilling lives. During Orpheus’ recent song week, in which students begin with a blank piece of paper and end with a number of original songs, Awa penned ‘Leaving it all behind’. Through the cathartic lyrics, she displayed maturity and self-assurance in sharing her feelings prior to attending Orpheus in comparison to where she stands now: “I’m not angry anymore, It was hard but look at me now, Living the life that I want, Leaving the past in the past, And the hurt, I’m leaving it all behind.

See her explain more about her experience at Graeae in this video.


Awa has since this internship completed 8 months at Active Prospect's head office in Reigate in the Business Development team, researching and presenting a Retrospective on Disability.