My name is Lucy, I’m currently studying Politics and History at the University of Hull and I will be working in Nic’s Westminster office for the next four months.
Moving down to London has been quite a culture shock as it is so massively different from home in North Lincolnshire. You don’t have to wait over an hour for a bus which is quite a foreign concept, but now when I’m food shopping all I want to do is exclaim at how pricey everything is. Scratch that, looking at any consumer item in London makes me want to proclaim ‘How much?!’ My bank account is probably not going to be thankful for this 4 month stint. But, the walk I have to work which takes me parallel to the Palace is a view which makes it all worthwhile.
Moving on to the placement itself. I spent 4 days in Nic’s office this week and already I feel like I’ve learnt a lot, as the activities I have been doing vary so differently in topic. On my first day I briefly attended a talk on the impact of the cut of the Independent Living Fund. The speakers were so passionate about the impact and the experiences they have heard from others. It was definitely an eye opener and I hope that the local authorities can reverse the cuts in funds that some of them have implemented, as it makes it more difficult for those who are disabled to be able to live life as independently as they can. I think that we can all agree that we all cherish the freedom that we have, to be able to do and go out where we want; this is something that has been made more difficult for disabled people from the impact of these cuts.
I also listened into Nic’s debate on mindfulness, a technique that I had not heard of before but seem to be seeing a lot now I have been made aware of it! Mindfulness helps reduce potential mental health issues from progressing, and with the statistic that 32.3% of 15-25 year olds are suffering from one or more mental health difficulties, I think that it is something that could help a lot of people. As someone whose teenage years saw the internet filter more and more into everyday life with the introduction of social media websites, I recognise how easy it could be to become cyber bullied or feel a bit down as to how it can glamourize other people’s lives. So I can see why this statistic has grown so much. If mindfulness helps people, then I hope that more children and adults can have access to it.
Alongside this, I’ve been helping out with Nic’s website and social media posts. I love the mixture of things we get to do in the office as it makes the day a lot more interesting. We will have to see what next week brings, but hopefully it will be just as enjoyable as this one has been.