Around 2.5% of UK adults are thought to live with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), with many of those diagnosed often feeling left behind. Cardiff-based mature student Polly is one of those adults – but one who embraces the condition to spur her on to follow her passions.
If studying for a degree in marketing wasn’t enough, Polly also volunteers for a Scouts Group and in 2022 joined Ogi’s Marketing team on a month-long placement as part of her studies.
Polly’s love for scouting began at just eight years old, moving through the programmes during her teens, to becoming a Deputy Lead Volunteer for the 22nd Cardiff Scouts today. This isn’t a one sided relationship either, as scouting has been a rock for Polly during her life, as well as giving her real social connections – something those living with ADHD often miss out on.
“It’s kept me going when times have been really quite tough. Knowing that I have the Scouts to come back to – almost like a distraction – is a big confidence boost for me.”
Like most 18 year olds, she first started university after leaving school, but her poor health and undiagnosed ADHD meant she found uni life challenging, and left the course mid-way through.
A few years on, after finally receiving a conclusive diagnosis, 26 year old Polly is back to her higher education studies, making a Scouts Promise to herself to be kind, helpful and to do her best.
Keen to expand her skills set and apply her marketing theory to practice, Polly reached out to Ogi for work experience, and joined the Marketing team for a six-week placement, where her hard working nature shone through.
“The Scouts motto is to always ‘be prepared’, but entering the world of work, I was anything but. I really didn’t know what to expect; but the flexible workplace, and open-mindedness of the team at Ogi made it a really lovely experience. A lot like the Scouts, it was a big boost of confidence that anything is possible if you put your mind to it.”
During her placement, with the Scouts motto in hand, eagle-eyed Polly found out about Ogi’s community fund ‘Cefnogi’ and quickly saw her community passion and work-life combining.
“The Scouts give young people life-changing opportunities, but like everything these days, a cash injection always helps. When I found out about Ogi’s community fund, I knew it could help. So when I found out my application had been successful, I was so chuffed.”
Supporting the 40-strong troop and the Scout leaders, the Cefnogi fund has been put toward the Cardiff and Vale-wide once-in-a-lifetime trip to Iceland in August 2023.
“It means the troop will have everything they need to [hopefully] get some sleep on the trip. At that time of year, it’s daylight for 24-hours so paying for sleep masks and warm clothing will, quite literally, be a lifesaver.”
“I love the fact that companies like Ogi exist to support communities. They really are creating a level playing field in our communities, not just providing next generation connectivity, but really putting communities at the heart of everything they do.”
Polly continues to juggle her studies, volunteering with the Scouts and managing the good and not-so-good times with that infectious smile and always prepared go-to attitude.