Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £1,001 to £5,000


Markfield is an inclusive community hub where people can play, socialise and get information and support. Our vision is a world where disabled, Deaf and autistic people are treated as equals, have a voice and can live the life they want. We focus on the needs of the whole family; working with disabled people, parents, carers and siblings. Our unique approach means we can help people create long term connections within their community and to continue accessing support or social opportunities at Markfield for years.

School holidays should be full of fun, but siblings often tell us they have to help look after their disabled brother or sister and are not able to go out with friends or as a family. We have run successful sibling playscheme weeks in the past and seek the funding to offer a holiday playscheme for 16 siblings aged 7 to 14 years old, providing opportunities for physical play, socialising and respite. Siblings tell us they need holiday playschemes “so we can have a break, make friends with people who understand us, and do things we don't get a chance to do with our families".

Day to day life for siblings can be tough; they are often young carers, get less attention from their parents and have more responsibilities than their peers. Research shows that young siblings are vulnerable to isolation, bullying, reduced well-being and problems with progress at school. Cuts to services for families of disabled children have increased the negative impact of disability on siblings and reduced siblings’ access to sibling groups and children’s mental health services.

Siblings at Markfield tell us that if they get breaks from family life, it enables them to feel less stressed. This project aims to make lasting positive change in siblings’ lives; helping them gain confidence to talk about their feelings, take a break from their extra responsibilities, be physically active and make friends. Feedback shows us how special it is for siblings to meet one another: “Now I've met other siblings I know we're the same - I'd like to stay friends to have someone to talk to.”

Siblings tell us they want to take part in activities that give them ‘memories’ and activities that will help increase their fitness, particularly as at home they tend to ‘play video games and go on the internet’. They want more access to sports, adventure play and trips to new places during the school holidays. Markfield’s unique building and adventure playground offers climbing structures, swings and slides, areas for sport and a zip wire. Our indoor play space includes a large hall, soft play room and a sensory room. This project will also include trips such as ice skating, bowling, trampolining and going to the cinema. Feedback from past trips has been very positive, one sibling said “I have enjoyed going ice skating and making new friends.. the group has made me braver, happier, and less shy”

This funding will enable us to run a week long playscheme for 16 siblings. It will cover the cost of staff salaries, National Insurance and pension contributions as well as the cost of play resources, snacks and trips. We will provide transport and offer a higher level of staff support for children that need it. It will cover the publicity and marketing costs for the project, staff training and also includes a percentage of building and governance overheads.

Parents tell us that sibling playschemes at Markfield have a really positive impact. One parent said “It allows our children a time to breathe, and express themselves through play in a safe caring environment”

Siblings are a vital part of our community and are often under a lot of additional pressure. By providing a holiday scheme at our unique adventure play centre, this project aims to give siblings a much needed break in a place they can be themselves, make friends and celebrate their amazing hard work.


Moment of Pride

This project will celebrate the vital role that siblings of disabled children have within our community; providing a break for them to socialise, be active and have fun. Markfield is a unique, inclusive community centre & adventure playground where people can play, socialise and get support.

Location: Tottenham, London, UK


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