Local Disability Charity Opens New Sensory Resource

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Coping with CHAOS, part of Diverse Abilities Plus, has launched a new sensory resource room at its Families Centre in West Moors, Dorset, thanks to the generosity of local businesses K. Baggs Trimming and Tradefit Kitchens who kindly donated their time, expertise and materials to design and build the room.

The Sensory Room

This is a fantastic new resource and we’re currently looking into ways to open it up for hire during evenings and weekends as well, so that it can be used as much as possible.

The new facility provides stimulation of all the senses including sight, sound and smell, and it will be used by the families supported by Coping with CHAOS. Individuals and small groups of adults and/or children with additional needs or disabilities can also hire the room, for periods of half an hour upwards, from Monday-Thursday 9am-2pm during term time and by arrangement during school holidays. Hire rates start at £10 for half an hour and discounts are available.

The resources of the sensory room can be fully-controlled by the user. If desired, the room can become a soothing environment - with minimal sensory input - in order to calm stressed and anxious children who experience autism. It also has a full-sized waterbed, set at 30 degrees centigrade, which is suitable for adults as well as children, and is wheelchair accessible.

Coping with CHAOS’ General Manager, Nikki Haswell, said: “This is a fantastic new resource and we’re currently looking into ways to open it up for hire during evenings and weekends as well, so that it can be used as much as possible. As well as providing a brilliant resource for our children and young people, we are hopeful that it will provide adults with learning disabilities, who receive direct payments/individual budgets, with another activity which they might like to purchase with their direct payments.”

She added: “If any reliable person living fairly locally would be interested in acting as a volunteer to open the room and supervise its use – after appropriate checks and training – we would be very keen to hear from them on 01202 855105”.

Coping with CHAOS’ services include ‘Play Opportunities’ during the school holidays, the ‘Awesome Nights Youth Club’ and the new special needs Parent/Toddler group which the charity holds on Friday mornings during term time.

The charity is actively recruiting for volunteer Play Workers, to play with non-disabled siblings during the holiday play opportunities in half term and especially the summer. Anyone over 14 years old, with a responsible attitude and some time available over the holidays who is interested in volunteering should speak to Tessa or Nikki.

Diverse Abilities Plus is the only local charity that provides lifetime support to children and adults with varying disabilities working across Dorset for 50 years. The charity provides a range of assistance, support and education services for young people aged two to 19, adults and families.

For more information or to contact Diverse Abilities Plus please visit http://www.diverseabilitiesplus.org.uk or call 01202 718266.

Editors Notes

Diverse Abilities Plus is a charity that has been supporting children and adults with Cerebral Palsy and associated disabilities working in the County of Dorset, England for 50 years. The charity provides a range of assistance, support and education services for young people aged two to 19, adults and families. Services include:

  •     Langside School – independent, non maintained specialist day school for children and young people from the age of two to 19 years who have PMLD (profound and multiple learning disabilities). It’s one of only 19 similar SEN (special education needs) schools in the UK.
  •     Smithers – provides overnight and day short breaks. Short breaks help families manage the challenges of providing full time care for their child. A visit can be during the day or a ‘sleep over’ allowing the child to make and meet friends and relax and enjoy themselves.
  •     Shapes – provides home support (domiciliary care) for children and young people aged between two and 18 with individually tailored programs.
  •     Project My Time – provides child-led holiday activities that give young people with disabilities the same leisure and fun opportunities that their peers enjoy.
  •     Barnabas – a well equipped day setting for adults. Adults can learn new skills and enjoy a wide range of experiences.
  •     Supported living – this service is for people who live in their own home but may need up to 24/7 support.
  •     Disability Wessex - offers assistance with disability benefits for people with disabilities or chronic and acute health conditions and their families or carers, as well as the parents of disabled children.
  •     Play Opportunities - supports families with disabled children to have a chance to get out and enjoy themselves with other families in similar situations.
  •     Awesome Days and Awesome Nights – A youth group, set up and run by young people of all abilities, aged between 13 - 19 years.
  •     Face 2 Face – a free and confidential network of trained volunteer befrienders, who support parents to make positive adjustments to the news that their child has a disability or additional need. Every Face2Face befriender is a parent whose own child has a disability. They know what it's like to cope with a new diagnosis and can offer support parent to parent.

The charity was founded in 1955 by Mrs Phyllis Edwards who formed a group of parent’s intent on providing better opportunities for their children with physical and learning disabilities.

Visit Diverse Abilities Plus Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/diverseabilitiesplus and follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/GoldChallengeDA

For more information
Contact: Zoe Hiljemark, PR Account Director / Jenny Pearce, Senior PR Account Executive
E-mail: zoe(at)marketing-matters(dot)co(dot)uk / jenny(at)marketing-matters(dot)co(dot)uk
Tel: +44 (0) 1202 777111 / +44 (0) 7770 924439
Address: Marketing Matters, Unit C, Acorn Business Park, Ling Road, Poole, Dorset, UK, BH12 4NZ

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