Sarah King is our school Pastoral Support Worker and she is available to help with parenting and other family issues for which you may require support. She is available on the playground most mornings and afternoons if you need to speak to her.
Phone: 07716 643783/0118 937 5473 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Short Breaks and Activities
Make Sense Theatre is a new drama company with teachers very experienced in working with young people with SEND. They have organised some short breaks for the Easter holidays for complex needs. They will be on the 14th, 15th and 16th April 2021 at the Avenue School. They will be delivering their unique 7Sense immersive, multi-sensory theatre approach for young people aged 12+ fully funded by Brighter Futures for Children. Information can be found here:
Thames Valley Adventure Playground is now open on Saturdays (except for 3rd April) and over the Easter holidays. For booking information https://www.tvap.co.uk/booking/covid-19-changes-to-tvap
Talkback are an organisation that supports young people and adults with autism and/or learning disabilities. They have a YouTube channel with easy to follow exercise, dance, activities: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXxPLCj449J4QeO_R6ozVjQ
Information and Support
The Local Offer have created a new parent to parent support button on local offer home page that tells who about organisations where you can meet other parents in a similar position. It contains information about Fifi’s Vision who are now holding weekly face to face coffee mornings for parents of children with additional needs.
Ways into Work have spaces to support young people with Special Educational Needs ad/or Disabilities who are not in education, training or employment aged 16 – 24. To find out more email email@example.com
As you may know, The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to employers to create job placements for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit. To access this, contact Elevate who will liaise with the Department of Work and Pensions 0118 937 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Reading SEND team has shared an extensive book list on a variety of topics for autistic young people and families, attached. For those of you who may not be aware, the charity Spectropolis (https://www.spectropolis.co.uk/) can send out books to children and young people with autism and/or their families and professionals working with them, for free.
Berkshire Vision have a new Children, Young People and Family Support Worker ,Carol Barnfather. Berkshire Vision hold a number of clubs and meet ups for young people with a vision impairment. A variety of children attend, and a number have other disabilities as well. Berkshire Vision also support siblings and help parents support and advise each other. Families can refer direct email email@example.com tel 0118 987 2803
The Forum have been having discussions with the Royal Berkshire Hospital regarding the media reports of blanket Do Not Resuscitate orders being used for people with learning disabilities. The Learning Disability Nurses have confirmed that the Royal Berks do not use blanket DNRs for people with learning disabilities. There are 2 learning disability nurses at the hospital who work with adults with learning disabilities and those about to transition to adult services. If you have any concerns, please ask hospital staff to contact them.
Opportunities to have your say
Brighter Futures for Children and Reading Families’ Forum want your help to develop better services for young people who are diagnosed with autism after the age of 11 or are waiting for an assessment of autism.
This short survey will be used by Brighter Futures for Children and Reading Families Forum to plan the support that young people want.
The first 5 people's names selected out of hat on 27th April 2021 will win a £20 Amazon gift voucher. The survey results will be kept confidential.
Berkshire Health Foundation Trust are looking for young people and parents/carers, who have accessed one of their children, young people, and family services (including CAMHS) during the pandemic. If you or a family member has accessed one of our services, they would love to hear your service story: How did you feel about the service? What was different during the pandemic in the way the service was delivered? And how did you feel about the difference? Please send your comments to Daryl Nicholas Daryl.Nicholas@berkshire.nhs.uk
The National Children’s Bureau is looking to conduct a set of focus groups with parents in April and May for Public Health England. They would like to speak to parents about their views of the Healthy Child Programme. They are particularly looking for input from parents of disabled children. Each parent participant will receive a £20 voucher for their time. Each focus group session will last approx. one hour and all input will be anonymised. Any parent who would like to take part or who has any questions about the project is asked to please send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The new special school for children with autism and/or social, emotional and mental health difficulties is due to open in September 2022. This is a joint project with Reading and Wokingham Borough Councils and will be situated at the Winnersh farm site. The detailed plans for the school building are not available yet but the site map is available. feedback can be submitted to email@example.com Comments should be submitted by Friday 9 April 2021.
Reading Families Forum will be at the Transition Workshop for parent/carers of young peoples aged 15-25 who have a diagnosis or awaiting assessment of Autism/ADHD Monday 29th March at 10 – 11:30. The aim of this workshop is to equip parents/carers to enable them to navigate the transition to adulthood and to support their young person with knowledge, skills and confidence. It will be delivered by Parenting Special Children and Reading Families’ Forum will be there to answer any questions you have about support in Reading. To book go to:
1st July 2021 9:30 – 2:30 Transition Conference for Preparing for Adulthood, jointly hosted by Reading Families’ Forum and Parenting Special Children. Join the conference to hear a disabled adult's personal experience, hear about the law from Professor Luke Clements and more. To book email firstname.lastname@example.org
Remember that the Local Offer has lots of information about local services for families of children with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). They have a friendly team who can answer all your questions about local support. 0118 9373777 (Option 2) (73777) https://servicesguide.reading.gov.uk/kb5/reading/directory/family.page?familychannel=3
GRAFT - Survival Guide Training
Our forthcoming training - Survival Guide. This deals with both the emotional and practical issues of finding meaningful employment. The next course starts on 12th February - with an introduction/taster session. Details are on the attached leaflet.
Introduction session 12th February 10am-12pm
Course starts 26th February and runs every Friday morning for 5 weeks.
To access this FREE training you will need a PC, laptop, smart-phone or tablet, with Zoom downloaded - and a good wifi connection. See attached leaflet for more details.
Further information and flyer can be found here http://search3.openobjects.com/kb5/reading/directory/service.page?id=GsGxAuZtYpE&familychannel=0
Please see below for the recent bereavement workshop for parents. There are also some helpful documents for you to download and look at.
Kooth - Online Counselling Service
Berkshire West CCG has commissioned the online counselling service Kooth, to support young people aged 11 – 18 years (up to 19th birthday).
Kooth is an integral component of Berkshire West’s mental health provision offering digital counselling and emotional well-being service for young people and young adults.
Kooth provides a safe, secure means of accessing help via the internet. By accessing young people can benefit from:
- A free, confidential, anonymous and safe way to receive support online.
- Out of hours’ availability. Counsellors are available from 12noon to 10pm on weekdays and 6pm to 10 pm at weekends, every day of the year on a drop in basis.
- Online Counselling from a professional team of BACP qualified counsellors is available via 1-1 chat sessions or messaging on a drop in basis or via booked sessions.
- Discussion Boards which are all pre-moderated allow young people to access peer to peer support.
- Online Magazine full of moderated articles many of which are submitted by young people offering advice and guidance on a huge range of topics.
- No referral is required. Young people can register for Kooth independently at www.kooth.com
To use the service or find out more visit www.kooth.com
Information can also be found here.
School Nursing Team - Support line for parents
Berkshire Healthcare is launching a new School Nursing advice and support line for children, young people and their families, to offer health advice and referral into the service for on-going support if needed. The line will be available from 9.00am-4.30pm, Monday to Friday.
You can access this service by dialing 0118 9312111 and selecting ‘Option 4’ to speak to a School Nurse from our team.
Please press the button below for information on courses for Parenting Special Children.
One Reading Support Hub is still available for anyone needing support with shopping or collecting medication-
Fill in their online coronavirus support form, call 0808 1894325 (freephone) from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday, 9am to 1pm on Saturday and Sunday, or you can send a text to 07754 361592.
Family Information Services can be contacted on 0118 9373777 for details of community activities and support groups for all.
The new Whitley Library is now open.
252 Northumberland Avenue, Reading RG2 7QA 0118 9015115
Monday, Wednesday and Sunday – closed
Tuesday – 9am-12pm and 1pm-7pm
Thursday – 9am-12pm and 1pm to 4pm
Saturday – 10am-1pm
Books – fiction and non-fiction
Books in Urdu
CDs, Cassettes and DVDs
Selection of magazines
Study space and photocopier
Free internet access and Wi-Fi.
Please pop along and explore this new library with your children.