Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £5,001 to £10,000

Description

At Rainbow House, we support children and young people whose lives are challenged by disability...

We do this through providing a very specialist teaching approach, known as Conductive Education, which helps people with neurological conditions to achieve their potential and live more independent lives. This is by no means a miracle cure, but it does help people to have a more positive outlook and hope for the future!

We know that the additional challenges facing someone with a disability and their family extend far beyond the immediate physical and mental impairments of that person. Through working with families since 2001, Rainbow House recognises that parents and siblings of the disabled child also need support. We currently employ a Parental Liaison Officer whose role involves supporting the families emotionally, whilst also helping them practically, offering information and guidance, also attending meetings etc to support the families.
Supporting families is an area that we would like to greatly develop, and this is how we would like the Aviva Community Fund to support Rainbow House, should we be fortunate enough…

In addition to the support that our Parents Liaison Officer provides, we want to be able to offer regular Counselling sessions at Rainbow House, for service-users, their parents/ carers, and siblings, for those who need it. We believe it is very important for our families to be able to have sessions with a Counsellor, who will be able to dedicate time on a one to one basis, each week. We know that families who have a disabled child often feel very isolated, Forgotten Families, 2011 states that 1 in 5 say that isolation has led to the break up of their family lives and 72% of parent carers experience mental ill health such as anxiety, depression or breakdown due to isolation. This service would certainly be valuable for the families of Rainbow House, who would be reassured that the service is at their fingertips, for themselves or their relatives, should they ever need it.

Should we secure the support from the Aviva Community Fund, we would also like to introduce family days out and young carers days. The funds would help us to hold days out and activities where families with disabled children can attend, with the support of our staff to help them throughout the day. For example, a day out at a theme park may be an overwhelming thought to some parents of disabled children. We know that many families avoid days out such as these to make life easier, but this means that their children miss out on certain experiences. Should the parents have the necessary support from our staff, it will be a thoroughly enjoyable day for all of the family and will enable them to create happy memories together, that they otherwise wouldn’t.

Many siblings of disabled children often miss out on parts of their childhood, due to the complex needs of the conditions that they have. We would like to also create a Young Carers Day, where our staff accompany the siblings on a special day out, carefree and enjoyable where the young carers will mix with others their age, who are in a similar position to them, can relate to their thoughts and feelings. This will be a great way of improving the confidence and self esteem of these youngsters who will be able to form friendships in the process!

Rainbow House

Location: Mawdesley

We are proud of this project because we know it is needs-led and therefore we know how needed it is and how valued it will be, should we succeed in providing it. It will bring families together, positively impacting upon the whole family unit, and helping to reduce the feeling of isolation.
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