Lakhile is a 12 year old student at Venturers’ Academy, a special school in Bristol for children with a primary diagnosis of autism. Lakhile was non-verbal until the age of six but since joining Venturers’ Academy in 2015, his musical talent has blossomed, as has his confidence in so many areas of life. He performed at Autism’s Got Talent in London in 2018 and he loves bringing joy to his classmates, teachers and his community.
During lockdown, he recorded this song, with vocal accompaniment from his mum and his aunt, with just one objective – to help people smile in these worrying and challenging times.
The principal of Venturers’ Academy, Trystan Williams, supported by a brilliant team of teachers and therapists, is working hard to ensure that the special provision for Venturers’ Academy students is uninterrupted, despite the school being closed to the majority of pupils. Therapy sessions have continued remotely via Zoom, home sensory equipment has been provided to the children most in need of this specialist calming equipment, and staff are travelling over 250 miles every day between them, to deliver packed lunches and home education packs to children located across four local authorities.
As we all adapt the way we live to play our part in fighting Covid-19, it is uplifting and inspiring to see how young people with disabilities, and the dedicated adults who support them, are facing the current crisis with hope and resilience.
The Principal of Venturers’ Academy, Trystan Williams, said: “Lakhile understands that his music can help to relieve anxiety and he hopes that he can help others by sharing his incredible talent. We encourage all our students to ‘work hard and be kind’ and Lakhile really demonstrates how to put this into practice.”
Lakhile’s music teacher is Alphonso Archer and he describes Lakhile as a “brilliant musician who is full of energy, enthusiasm and imagination.”
Lakhile himself, says “Maybe I was born for music”. To listen to Lakhile’s wonderful performance, please click here.