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The Speech and Language Therapy (S and LT) Service works across the whole county providing help in both community and hospital settings. We treat children up to the age of 16 years (up to 19 years in special education), who have a difficulty with communication or swallowing.
The Service is provided in a number of ways, depending on need. This may be for example: individual or group treatment, parent/carer workshops and drop-in information clinics.
The service also undertakes a role in providing training and specialist support to parents/carers and staff working with children and young people in schools, residential units and other settings. This enables parents/carers and professionals involved with the child, to provide an appropriate level of support and input.
ACE Unlimited is a monthly youth club for disabled young people aged 18-25 to come and meet friends in a safe and fun packed environment.
ACE has exciting activities that help young people learn new life skills and have new experiences to help build self-confidence and prepare for adulthood and independence. Every young person is encouraged to think about and work towards achieving their aspirations.
Activities include, sport, music, cooking, art and all activities are chosen by the young people attending. There is also access to the youth centres usual youth group amenities e.g. pool table, television, kitchen.
The young people are encouraged to take part in organising activities that they want to do in addition to the monthly clubs. These could be trips to the theatre, days out, music concerts, sports events etc.
Safeguarding is taken very seriously. Each young person will have a volunteer or member of staff available if needed and parents are not required to stay. All staff and volunteers are trained to meet the basic needs of the young people for example; safeguarding and epilepsy awareness. Paid staff are also trained to provide first aid, personal care, tube feeds and administration of medication and emergency medication and wherever possible any other requirement of the young person.
BDCPS also offers short residential trips and special days out to sports events, music concerts, theatre shows etc.
These trips and days out are chosen by young people coming along to BDCPS clubs and schemes. They help young people to spend time with friends, to try out new things, build confidence, independence and achieve aspirations. Some of the adventures include other family members too.
Adventures also provide short breaks and respite to families to allow them time away from caring, time for themselves or to spend with other family members.
Plans for adventures come from talking to and working with the young people coming to BDCPS and parent/carers. The young people are encouraged to take part in organising activities that they want to do. They are not regular like clubs as they are fitted around when events are on e.g. Twickenham Rugby, Rhythms of the World Music Festival.
They cover all ages up to 25 years and a wide range of activities and can be anything from a few hours a night away, a long weekend or midweek break. Once an idea for a trip comes in the team work on how this can happen and how to raise some of the funds to do it.
Charges for the adventures are different depending on what it is and how much funding can be raised towards it by the team e.g. a big brother outdoor activity weekend cost families £195 (a fraction of the actual cost) a day out to see a Theatre performance and supper £30.
Safeguarding is taken very seriously. Each young person will have a volunteer or member of staff available if needed and parents are not required to stay/go along unless it is a specific family trip.
All staff and volunteers are trained to meet the basic needs of the young people for example; safeguarding and epilepsy awareness. Paid staff are also trained to provide first aid, personal care, tube feeds and administration of medication and emergency medication and where possible, any other requirement of the young person.
The main aim of pre-school is to provide care and education for children aged 2 years 6 months – 5 years. We aim to provide a safe, secure and welcoming environment where children are valued as individuals and where they can learn by playing together. We believe that young children learn best through play and aim to provide a range of activities that capture children’s interests and imaginations and help them to learn new concepts and develop their skills. We will support children and families until the children move on to school.
The Pre-school has links with the Toddler group which meets in the same space and families are very welcome to attend these sessions on Wednesday afternoons from 1.30-3pm.
We have 3 staff members who are qualified SEND and will support and tailor individual educational plans accordingly, and where possible, include children into our everyday activities and events.
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.
Provides a positive environment for scale model construction.
Provides welfare benefits advice for people referred through Social Services.
Public Libraries provide access to reading, learning, culture, information and IT, and help to bridge social and digital divides. They support well-being, encourage reading and learning, and help to foster identity, community and a sense of place for people of all ages, backgrounds and cultures.
The Borough's library service is provided through five Libraries (Bedford, Putnoe, Kempston, Bromham and Wootton), the Mobile Library, the Library Link service for those who cannot visit the library themselves, Kempston Homework Centre, the Virtual Library, and a range of community outreach and library based activities, as well as the Schools Library Service and Bookstart Service.
The service fulfils its role by providing libraries where people can read and borrow books and other stock, use a library computer or wifi, discover information, get help from knowledgeable staff, and make use of the safe, welcoming, community space which libraries provide; as well as providing a service via the virtual library with online access to library services, information, e-resources and other content, including areas especially for children and young adults.
Libraries also provide a range of events and activities for children and young people including Rhymetimes, Family Fun and Holiday Story and Craft activities, and the Summer Reading Challenge.
Bedford College offer programmes of education for young people and adult working from pre-entry to Higher Education in a wide range of academic and vocational areas. The college successfully support young people and adults to progress into Higher Education and work. The college also provide specialist provision for young people within discrete groups, should you be interested in this offer please refer to our section on Supported Learning Courses.
The college offer a range of support for those young people with an identified Learning Difficulty and/or Disability according to individual need. Typical services provided can include:
• 1-1 or small group support outside of the main class where students may develop study skills, English and/or maths to support them to achieve their main qualification.
• Teaching Assistant support within both structured and un-structured times if appropriate.
• Learning Support Assistants to support with physical and personal care needs if required.
• Specialist exam arrangements
Alongside these services we have specialist Autism, Deaf and Dyslexia Co-ordinators.
The Autism Co-ordinator provides specialist support to both students and staff to promote effective support and student achievement to those on the spectrum, this can include mentoring support, staff development and assessment. The Co-ordinator is supported by an Assistant and together they provide daily drop in sessions for students at both our Cauldwell Street and Shuttleworth campuses.
At our Cauldwell Street site we have a dedicated base room called ‘The Haven’ which students can access throughout the day. The specialist team also work with students to plan social activities which have included bowling, ice skating at Christmas, meals out and an arts evening with pizza!
The Deaf Co-ordinator is herself Hard of Hearing and her preferred method of communication is British Sign Language, this provides her with a unique insight that she is able to utilise to meet the needs of students both in terms of mentoring and pairing to a communicator. The Deaf Co-ordinator delivers training to staff in develop their awareness and BSL communication skills. The Deaf Co-ordinator is supported by a team of experienced communicators.
The team also have two Dyslexia Co-ordinators who provide staff awareness training, specialist teaching and exam arrangements.
The focus of the college support team is very much upon supporting students to become as independent as they possibly can within their learning to support their longer term aspirations.