I’m Richard and I’m enabled to live in a fantastic flat with my partner Barbara by ubu in Harrogate. Our uStep support was opened in 2013 by the Mayor. Many of my friends live here with independence supported by ubu in the group of flats that are in my building. Because my home is right in the middle of Harrogate I can easily get out and about into town and I take part in all sorts of activities and community events.
Recently I celebrated my 60th birthday. It was quite a milestone in my life. On the day before my big day, I went out with Barbara for a meal at one of my favourite restaurants in Harrogate. It was an Italian restaurant that is well known for serving the very finest Mediterranean-style food. I try to have a healthy diet and look after myself, so this was the perfect place for me because I love eating pasta.
The next day was my actual birthday. Because it was a Sunday, I went to church as I usually do. This is something I really enjoy and my faith means a lot to me. I like taking part as a member of the congregation especially with the singing! When I came home afterwards my flat had been beautifully decorated with balloons and birthday banners by my friends and everyone was there waiting for me.
The friendships I have made since I’ve lived in my new flat have been very important to me. My friends keep me feeling young at heart and they help me to enjoy my life and everything I do to the full. It was a wonderful party, we shared a lovely buffet of delicious foods and snacks. Everyone sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to me and a fantastic birthday cake was brought in covered in candles for me to blow out. Luckily there weren’t actually 60 candles on it!
Then we all got up and the dancing started. It had been a lovely day. I had been given lots presents and cards from everyone. I was so happy that I had been able to share my special birthday with the people around me who have become such good friends and neighbours.
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