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I owe so much to National Star

I owe so much to National Star
As a teenager Andrea Riga was told she would never get a paid job. She was determined to prove them wrong.

Andrea was a learner at National Star in the early 1980s and completed her City and Guilds Foundation Course in Commercial Studies.

‘I have lived a normal life – I have married, divorced. I own my own flat. Thanks to my training at National Star and the opportunities in the workplace, I have always had work,’ says Andrea.

‘If I hadn’t worked then I wouldn’t be in the position I am in today. It’s important for young people with disabilities to have the same opportunities.’

In her third year Andrea, who has cerebral palsy, became a residential learner so that she could develop her independence skills. She moved into the then new Moose Bungalow, which she shared with six other girls.

Thirty-four years later Andrea returned to Moose Bungalow – now named Malvern – to carry out a quality inspection in her role with Inclusion Gloucestershire.

‘It was wonderful to return in my professional role to the residence where I learned to become independent. It made me realise how far I have come and what I have achieved.

‘If it wasn’t for National Star and the course I took, I wouldn’t have gone on to get the jobs and have the life I have today.’

Find out more

We’ve been realising the aspirations of people with disabilities for 50 years. Meet some of the people who have been a part of our history on our 50th anniversary hub.

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