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Around 6% of children starting school have speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) - an average of 2 in every classroom.
Afasic is the UK charity representing children and young people with speech, language and communication difficulties, working for their inclusion in society and supporting their parents and carers.
Our Advice and Information Services provide support to thousands of people every year, including Helpline and email support, free to download factsheets and access to our local networks.
If you are a parent or young person wanting help and more information, go to www.afasic.org.uk or ring our Helpline on 0300 666 9410.
Autism Bedfordshire is a charity that provides services to individuals with autism, their families, carers and professionals across Bedfordshire. Our key purpose is to provide emotional and practical support as well as information, advice, guidance and advocacy.
The outcomes our services deliver (as evidenced by our monitoring and evaluation) are:
1. Individuals with autism and their families will feel less isolated.
2. Individuals with autism will develop confidence, self-esteem, communication, social and life skills.
3. Parents will feel less stressed and better able to cope.
4. Parents will improve their knowledge about autism and the services available.
Autism is a lifelong disability so our membership reflects this as we support both children and adults. We run countywide services for our members including:
- family support groups (L.O.A.F. - Loads of Autistic Fun)
- youth groups (Wanted Fun)
- summer activity schemes
- extended services (e.g. trampolining, golf and swim sessions)
- skills training courses for adults with autism
- social groups for adults with autism
- parent training
- autism awareness training for professions (levels 1, 2 and 3)
- a helpline service (01234 350704) with trained and experienced team members on hand to answer calls (anything from services enquiries to crisis calls).
Autism Bedfordshire’s members can access books and other resources from our library and will receive our bi-monthly newsletter giving details about our services and other groups and activities that may be of interest. We also communicate information to members and our staff through e-newsletters. We have a website that anyone can access and we are on Facebook and Twitter.
School Holiday Club
Covering all school holidays and all teacher training days, teenagers are able to spend time with their peers at BGC. We organise a range of activities covering morning (9a.m – 12.45p.m) , afternoon (1.15p.m – 5.00p.m) or all day sessions. Where possible we prefer the activities to be chosen by the young people.
Aimed at young people between the age of 14 and 19 who have Learning disabilities, Autism and Challenging behaviour.
Care Forum is a Home Support Service for Children and Young People with a Physical or Learning Disability and their families providing support either in their own homes or in the community. We provide carers with a break from the caring role and give them time for other family members.
We enable young people to participate in community activities and integrate into society, enabling them to gain independence and social skills to fulfill their potential. We offer support to families in the day to day care of their children where extra help is needed such as morning or evening routines, mealtimes, personal care and health care needs. We support children in school settings and assist with managing behaviours.
We offer overnight and weekend care in the child's own home to enable parents to sleep or take a short break away. We accompany parents on day trips if additional help is needed.
Sessions range from an hour to help with routines, 3 or 4 hours in the community to an evening sit or taking a child on holiday for a week.
Promotes the use of sign language in the local community. Offers support for deaf children and people of all ages by linking them with social groups, interpreters/communicators and national organisations for the deaf.
Holiday clubs are held at Unit 5 Britannia Estate, Leagrave Road, Luton, Beds , LU3 1RJ. Holiday clubs are a lifeline to families and offer practical support, a range of creative, stimulating and FUN activities for children and young people within a safe non-judgmental environment. Activities include: play equipment and sensory equipment, plus IT and games equipment, workshops, messy play, drama and music, reptile shows and lots of other FUN activities.
The Link Project helping young people with a disability or learning need/s to access peer friendship by take part in activities in their communities. Once a month two volunteers will take the young person out accessing transport and learning everyday life skills while having fun.
FUNlands Youth Club is held on a Monday night term time only at Unit 5, Britannia Estate, Leagrave Road, Luton, Beds , LU3 1RJ. FUNlands runs 6.30pm till 8.30 pm for young people aged 10 - 17 years old with additional needs/disabilities.
FUN Young Adult Club
FUN young adult for 18 – 25 years old on Tuesday evenings from 6.30pm – 8.30pm for young adults with additional needs (term time only). This is a safe environment for Young adults with learning disabilities to meet, socialise and take part in activities with their friends.
Saturday Club is a full short break service offering young people with disabilities aged 10 – 25 years 1:1 support whilst accessing on and off site activities. Off site activities are local, such as swimming, bowling, cinema, picnics, sports etc. For more details please check the website: www.familiesunitednetwork.org.uk or call the office on 01582 420800.
Keech Swim - FUN hires Keech Hospice Hydrotherapy pool fortnightly offering families a swim session for those that need the sensory and stimulation of lights and the warmer water.
Hart Hill Adventure Playground - FUN exclusively hires Hart Hill Adventure Playground in partnership with Autism Beds and Fab Friendz. These sessions are a great activity for families.
East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT) provides mental health services for people in Bedfordshire.
The service has been commissioned by Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (BCCG), in partnership with Central Bedfordshire Council and Bedford Borough Council.
We are committed to the ongoing development of mental health and learning disability services.
Assessment & Advice Officers are funded through Sense's charitable resources, each Sense operational area has an Assessment & Advice Officer[AAO].
The Assessment & Advice Officer provides assessment and advice to newly identified deafblind people to help them access appropriate support and services. The AAO will actively identify deafblind people within the local area and engage with them and, if appropriate, their carers and current providers of services to offer appropriate support.
Where specialist assessments in respect of deafblind people are required under the Deafblind Guidance, 'Social Care for Deafblind Children and Adults', the AAO is fully qualified to carry out the assessment or work with another colleague within Sense who is qualified to undertake such an assessment.
One-to-One support to Deafblind children and adults, acting as an enabler for the individual to help in their social and personal development, as well as health and general wellbeing.
By providing one-to-one support to congenitally Deafblind children or adults, an Intervenor acts as an enabler, promoting the person's social and personal development, encouraging their independent skills and facilitating their communication with the world around them. Intervenor support may be provided in the person's home, in their local community, in an educational or vocational setting or a combination of these.
Intervenor schemes are usually funded by direct payments, individual budgets, social services, local health or education authorities. A person-centred approach to planning for leisure, learning, social, and vocational opportunities, enables Deafblind people to develop new skills and increase their independence. Individual programmes focus on daily life experiences and will include encouraging the use of residual vision and hearing, communication, development of cognitive skills, mobility, orientation and social skills.
Activities which might be included in an individual plan are: college courses, sport and leisure, art and craft activities, shopping, cooking, IT, use of public transport. Choices are made by the Deafblind person to suit their needs and interests.
We have a clear plan for children and young people in settings and schools so that we can identify early SEND needs and provide support through a process of good planning and reviewing. To this end we have produced two Graduated Response documents which outline and provide a clear message about responsibilities for early identification of need and what can be done to ensure plans are in place to support children and pupils with additional needs.