Funding level: £10,001 to £25,000


Who we are
The Early Years Assessment Centre at Pinderfields Hospital Pupil Referral Unit offers educational provision for children aged 2 - 5 with a range of complex physical, medical and social communication needs including Autism, Down's Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy. We cater for children throughout the Wakefield district offering an inclusive, engaging and supportive learning environment. Some of our children come from deprived areas.

What we need
Our outdoor area is in desperate need of refurbishment as much of the equipment is inaccessible for children with complex needs. We would like to create a safe space where children of all abilities can play and learn. Our plan is to remove the old equipment which is not fit for purpose and develop an area which will support learning in all areas of the curriculum and social development. We strive to enable children to access outdoor learning opportunities which cannot be provided in the indoor environment through gross motor and whole body experiences.

Our children need to have a safe space where they can practice their gross motor skills and the introduction of disability friendly equipment would enable all children to experience success in this area. A new reading area will be established which will give children exposure to language and further their understanding of stories as well as developing their love for books. Opportunities for developing imaginative play will be increased through a dedicated role play area for children to explore. This is especially important for children with social communication difficulties. A sensory garden will be particularly beneficial for children with the most complex of needs as they learn to understand the world around them through using their senses. We will make an area for creative development where children will be able to paint and draw on a large scale using their imaginations and improving gross motor movement and control. A climb in sand pit will enable all children to access this area and have a whole body sensory experience. Our current sand pit is too high for many of our children to access. We will extend our water play area through creating a water wall where children can investigate how water moves.

Our outdoor area has a small footprint and therefore this project will require careful planning so that we are able to meet the needs of the current cohort of children and future pupils. We will be using the space we have creatively to ensure its potential is maximised.

What difference it will make
With a planned and purposeful outdoor environment, the children will be able to make increased progress in all areas of their learning whilst feeling safe, secure and having fun. The area will also be available to children attending the primary school on the same site. Currently we have access to the primary school's outdoor area which is suitable for mobile children. Our outdoor area would enhance the overall outdoor provision by providing areas and equipment for children with disabilities and extend opportunities for children attending both the Early Years Assessment Centre and the primary school.

Parents struggle to take children to local play areas as there is a lack of adapted equipment within the community and the cost of installing such specialist play facilities in their homes make outdoor play almost impossible for these children. The outdoor areas at Pinderfields Hospital PRU may be the only opportunity they have to play safely outside.

Having such a well equipped and planned outdoor area will ensure that a wide range of needs can be met both now and in the future. We have looked at past projects which have been funded through Aviva and the community fund and are hopeful in securing funding to improve outcomes for the children at Pinderfields Hospital Pupil Referral Unit

Pinderfields Hospital Pupil Referral Unit

Moment of Pride

The children who attend Pinderfields Hospital Pupil Referral Unit show great determination and resilience in overcoming barriers to learning. They and their families work tirelessly to enjoy and achieve every single day. A renovated outdoor area really would make all the difference.

Location: Wakefield District, United Kingdom