"I want to see girls thrive"

By Sam Munroe-Smith, Co-founder & Operations Director

Transcript

Carole McNally, co-founder and managing director:
Can you speak about your experiences are neurodiverse woman, especially in education, what have you have any struggles? What have you done to cope?

Sam Munroe-Smith co-founder and operations director:
It’s been really, really frustrating. I don’t even know how to put it into words. It’s like you’re forever reminding yourself there’s certain things you can’t do, certain things you can’t say, and it’s almost like you can’t be yourself. And it’s like there’s only a few people that you can actually explain this feeling to, and most of the time you find out that they’re actually neurodiverse and they’re hiding – and then they say you’re the first person that I’ve told. Then you’re like, ‘that’s why we get along! You understand how I’m feeling’.

I find it difficult not to tell the truth. But I’ve been reminded that people don’t like to hear the truth. So I’m always checking, you know, you can’t say this, you can’t do that. You feel like you’ve just been put into a box and the box has been sealed at times. Or you’re just fighting against different things.

Carole:
You started the neurodiverse girls group at the school, can you talk about the differences that has made, especially to the girls?

Sam:
I’ve seen the girls grow in confidence because now they have someone that understands what they’re going through and how I have helped them to problem solve, and you know, have their own journey, because everyone’s journey is unique.

For example, in our sessions, we would say ‘does this work for you? Or, no, it doesn’t work for me’ and we just all laugh about things. But most of the time we all recognise that we are all experiencing the same things.

Some of the girls now are actually in top sets, they’re doing well. But they’re telling me that they could do even more because of the girls group, because they’ve got that confidence and they’re able to go and speak to the teachers and tell them exactly what they need to continue in a positive, journey.

Carole:
So, what are you hoping to achieve with EnterTech? What do you want to see happen?

Sam:
Oh, that’s a really broad question for me because I would want to change the whole world, but I know it’s not possible! But with EnterTech I would like to see girls flourish and go to top universities, Russell universities, because sometimes they’re kind of restricted because they face different issues. People might think they have mental health issue, but actually it’s not mental health issues. It’s just that they need a bit of support. Some of them they’re self-harming because they’re feeling like they’re not being listened to. So I would like to see them just cross those hurdles and to see them flourish and to be the people that they were born to be.

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