SENDaWelcome is kicking off its initiative to turn BS7 into an inclusive community for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) with its first social event this coming weekend.
Children with SEND and their families and friends are invited to an afternoon of socialising, music and play at St Michael’s Church on Gloucester Road this Sunday, 27th November.
Children will also be able to play onboard the Sensory Truck, a mobile sensory play space with a ball pit, UV area, air bubble tube and many other sensory resources.
SENDaWelcome plans to hold social gatherings twice a year, giving local families a chance to meet, play and socialise in their own community.
Often children with special needs are taken out of the community they live in to access schools. This has wide-reaching effects on these children, their siblings and families, and the wider community.
SENDaWelcome wants to find ways of working locally, with local people, to ensure our children have equal access to, and visibility in, their own community.
During the summer 2016SENDaWelcome partnered with Golden Hill Community Garden and received funding from the Neighbourhood Partnership, to run three family fun days for families with children with SEND.
The waiting lists for every session and the positive feedback from participants confirmed that there is a need for inclusive events and activities in BS7.
“From the conversations we heard at our family fun days this summer, many families can feel isolated and see their children as missing out on opportunities to participate in a meaningful way in their communities compared to their mainstream children/peers,” says Katarina Luce, co-founder of SENDaWelcome.
“Going forward, we hope to build a network of volunteers from our community who can support local children with learning disabilities to access mainstream leisure activities, such as local clubs. We will also work with the wider community to challenge and support attitudes towards inclusion.”
The SENDaWelcome’s social will take place on Sunday 27th November 2016 between 2pm and 4pm at St Michael’s Church, 160a Gloucester Road, BS7 8NT.