Tracey and Erin's story
Erin has been cared for by childminders Karen and Steve since she was a toddler and a strong bond has been formed with the whole family. We hear from Tracey, Erin's mum, about just how valuable the good quality care provided has been in her daughter's development and how her childminders have been instrumental in Erin’s successful transition to school.
Paul, Callum and William's story
Paul is a single parent and dad to Callum and William. Without the support provided through his sons’ specialist childcare, Paul would have no respite care, would not be able to work and would have no opportunity to have any time for himself.
Amanda and Hannah's story
Amanda describes how her daughter, Hannah, being able to attend a good quality, inclusive after-school-club, has allowed her work, but more importantly, has allowed Hannah to develop and become more independent and confident around her peers.
Jade and Preston's story
Jade is mum to Preston. She didn't have many opportunities for him to mix with children his own age. Her son's nursery have been excellent in supporting Preston to access the childcare that he needs, making the very minor adaptations that will allow him to feel comfortable and develop around other children.
Adam is 11 years old. He has CHARGE Syndrome. His parents felt strongly that he needed to be playing with other children and in an environment where he would be developing alongside other children. His parents found a local authority-funded special needs nursery, but as this had a nine month waiting list, a significantly long time in a child's life, they approached their childminder to see if she could provide care for Adam.
George is six and has tuberous-sclerosis - a genetic condition which can be slow to emerge and often goes undiagnosed for several years. When George was a few months old, after being told by a childminder that she couldn’t offer him the care that he needed, and after much searching, his family managed to find someone with no direct experience of caring for a child with complex health needs, but who had a 'can do' attitude, who managed to access local funding, which enabled her to provide the care that George needed.
Sam is five and has cerebral palsy. He communicates with his eyes and through making noises. Sam's mum decided that it would be beneficial for all the family if he were in childcare for some of the week - giving Sam the opportunity to be around other children and adults in a stimulating environment and his mum some respite from the constant care and medical meetings, enabling her to return to work.
Challengers is a charity set up in the 1970s to fill a gap in childcare, after school and holiday activities for disabled children and young people in Surrey. We spoke to a number of families who use these services who shared their stories with us about how this childcare had helped with the development of their children with special educational needs and disabilities.
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