WarrPAC Work Wednesday November 22nd
We’ve missed a couple of Wednesdays due to holidays, so here’s a quick catch up on what we’ve been doing (In no particular order!!):
Welcome to Laura
We are delighted to welcome Laura onto our Family Engagement Team. Just to put her on the spot, we thought we’d let her introduce herself!
“I’m Laura, I’m mum to three children Luke, Hannah and Pippa. My youngest daughter Pippa had a difficult start with extensive health problems and underwent heart surgery at 5 weeks old. Pippa went on to begin mainstream school but it quickly became apparent that her difficulties were more complex and also effected her learning and cognitive ability.
Pip was subsequently diagnosed with cerebral visual impairment, social and communication problems and sensory processing difficulties. In fact we were offered endless different labels before a medical trial eventually led us to a rare genetic diagnosis called Kabuki syndrome. I found myself in a whole new world of paperwork and professionals who all had something to say about what my daughter could or couldn’t do. I felt very lost and out of my depth trying to make decisions about which school or provision she should attend.
I eventually came across WarrPAC, the help and advice they provided was invaluable and the families and networks I connected with through them helped me to gain strength and knowledge to enable me to support Pippa. I decided to volunteer and hope as part of WarrPAC I can try to help other families who are going through similar experiences.”
Congratulations to Jean
Our warmest congratulations go out to our Chair, Jean Fitzpatrick, who has been shortlisted for the Warrington Guardian’s Inspiration Awards 2017. Unfortunately, Jean will be unable to attend the award ceremony, so the rest of the team have the honour of attending on her behalf. Well done, Jean – you are our inspiration!!
Next Steps Conference
The time has come around once again to chat to the families looking to start school next September – this can be a very daunting time for our families, and it’s a great opportunity for us to share our experiences and let them know that they are not alone in the journey. Sarah and Sharon did a brilliant job, as always, sharing their stories with the conference and we had some great feedback from those who were there.
You guys did a great job sharing your stories and showing what this group can offer. Thank you x
Thank you both so much for your input! You were both as inspiring as ever 😊😊
You were both fab. A real support to all the parents xx
Short Breaks Strategy Review
On Monday, we met up with Clare Pickering, who is bringing together the updated Short Breaks Statement for Warrington. We worked together with her to ensure that all your views collected last year in our “Ask Away” events and survey are included in the new version of the statement, which will be available for wider circulation soon.
Kidz to Adultz North
On Thursday a few of the team went over to Manchester to the “Kidz to Adultz North” exhibition, bringing lots of useful information back to our office. This is a great way to find out about what’s available for our families out there, so feel free to pick our brains if your child / young person is looking for anything in particular.
We also met up with Iain McDonald from the Special Educational Needs Information Advice and Support Service. Our families are keeping Iain very busy in this vital role and he is a life line to many parents and carers out there who need support in getting the right educational placement for their child. We were devastated to find that funding for the service has not been confirmed for March next year, and have sent in a Statement of Support from WarrPAC.
SEND Survey and Conference Follow Up
We met up with Terry Jones, Head of Integrated Services to complete the survey return to the Department for Education – both the Local and Authority and ourselves feed back to the DfE our views on the implementation of the SEND reforms.
We also discussed last years conference and getting feedback out to our families of progress that has been made since. The new strategy will be circulated in early December, but we also want to let our families know what has been happening since our conference, before we get into planning the next one!
Marcus Presenting at the ADHD Foundation
So very proud of our Marcus doing an amazing presentation at the ADHD Foundation – sharing a powerful insight into the world of ADHD from a young person’s perspective. He so deserved the standing ovation that he received at the end 💚💚💚💚
We have had some fabulous entries for our face of WarrPAC competition, so we have created a video so that we could share them with you all.
Benefits, Finance and Grants Training
Thank you to our members who turned out for our ‘Benefits’ training on Tuesday – some great content shared by Contact. Keep an eye on our page for the last training session of the year coming up. Booking will be taken on a first come basis, so be quick 💚
Our last coffee morning was a general chatting session to share our issues – good and bad.
Iain McDonald from SENDIASS will be joining us for our next coffee morning 11.30 – 1pm on 1st December at the Sensory Centre
Tomorrow, Sarah will be attending the Early Years SENCO meeting.
On Friday, we will be joining in the Wired Carers Rights Day:
Have you got your Christmas jumper ready for Saturday yet? We have and the odd hat too. Our Christmas Fair is set to be a cracker and you’ll find us at Woolston Learning Village in Green Lane and Foxwood Schools.
All are welcome to join us and you’ll be able to browse for so many gifts including Bodyshop, Forever Living, felt Christmas deccies and stocking fillers by Sarah’s Heartfelt Gifts, personalised frames from ScrabbleBe, JJ Hampers, Magnetix Jewellery, Flamingo Paperie, wooden engraved gifts by Sungy, Alterations who have the most divine wreaths and christmas sacks, Vintage Glow candles, Usborne books and an incredible range of children’s clothing from Cheeky Little Monkeyz.
If that’s not enough, you’ll be able to visit Father Christmas, have your face painted and join in with activities provided by Creating Adventures, Warrington Wolves Foundation, Warrington Youth Club and sing your hearts out with Cheshire Chord.
The fun starts at 12…see you there!