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Blogs & Links

Insights & Resources

Organisations for people with Additional Needs
Organisations for people with Specific Additional Needs
Organisations for people with Undiagnosed Conditions
Organisations for people with Rare Conditions
Organisations supporting Families and Carers
Advice and Information
Online Communities
Aids and Equipment
Wish-granting Organisations
Children's Organisations

Organisations for people with Additional Needs

Jigsaw Creative Care
An award winning introductory care recruitment agency through which you can recruit a special needs nurse or nanny for your child. The staff are parents themselves, with years of experience in the care recruitment sector, and are fully trained in safer recruitment techniques.

A national charity working with disabled children, young people and their families across England.

Mencap works with people with a learning disability to change laws, challenge prejudice and support them to live their lives as they choose.

National Portage Assocation
Portage is a home-visiting educational service for pre-school children with additional support needs and their families.

Disability Rights UK
The leading UK independent pan-disability organisation, representing 11 million disabled people. Their campaigns influence Government on disability issues, driving positive change. Their vision is a just and equal society whose strength is human difference.

A national charity, which works with disabled people at every stage of their lives - providing information services, education, help and advice, and everyday care, as well as campaigning on the issues most important to disabled people.

Capability Scotland
Provides services directly to around 1000 disabled people at over 25 locations around Scotland, supporting people at every stage of their lives and at home, work and school, including early years and childcare services which help both children with disabilities and their carers.

The Disability Book
An advice resource and on-line community for people with disabilities and their families.

Organisations for people with Specific Additional Needs

National Autistic Society
Provides information, support and services for people with autism, and campaigns for a better world for them.

A quarterly magazine designed to give impartial, fun, practical advice for parents of young children on the autism spectrum.

CLIC Sargent
UK cancer charity for children, young people and their families. They provide clinical, practical, financial and emotional support to help them cope with cancer and get the most out of life.

Cerebral Palsy Guide
US Cerebral Palsy site. Information on types of CP, diagnosis, prognosis and treatment.

Cerebral Palsy Guidance
US Cerebral Palsy information site. Providing a wealth of guidance and assistance to parents of children with cerebral palsy.

Cerebral Palsy Group
Online resource for anyone who has been affected by cerebral palsy, birth injuries, or brain injuries.

The Challenging Behaviour Foundation
Would like to see children and adults with severe learning disabilities, who are described as having challenging behaviour, having the same life opportunities as everyone else, including home life, education, employment and leisure. They provide information, support, training, campaigning, consultancy and special projects.

National Deaf Children's Society
Their mission: to remove the barriers to the achievement of deaf children throughout the world.

Downs Syndrome Association
National charity, focusing solely on all aspects of living successfully with Down's syndrome: runs a helpline, provides information and advice, provides training for members, professionals and carers, and runs local support groups.

British Dyslexia Association
The British Dyslexia Association (BDA) campaigns for a dyslexia friendly society where barriers to dyslexic people do not exist. The BDA works to ensure that ALL people with dyslexia fulfil their potential.

Kith and Kids
Provides activities, opportunities, information and support for people with a learning disability or autism, their parents and siblings.

Muscular Dystrophy Campaign
A UK charity focusing on muscular dystrophy and other related conditions. They are dedicated to beating muscular dystrophy and other related conditions by finding treatments and cures and to improve the lives of everyone affected by them.

Disabled Living
Provides a national service, working as part of Disabled Living, Manchester to improve the life for all people with bladder or bowel problems by offering product information, advice and practical solutions to both professionals and the general public.

Provides school, early intervention and parent and child groups for children with motor disorders and other conditions including cerebral palsy and dyspraxia. The institute provides support to children and helps them to develop greater bodily control, to communicate more effectively in order for them to lead independent lives to the best of their abilities.

The leading charity offering information, support and advice to people with sight loss: practical ways to help live with sight loss, advice on travel, shopping, managing money and technology, as well as campaigns and research.

A small national charity supporting children and adults affected by a lower limb condition such as clubfoot or a hip condition.

A national charity that supports and campaigns for children and adults who are deafblind. They provide tailored support, advice and information as well as specialist services to all deafblind people, their families, carers and the professionals who work with them. They also support people who have a single sensory impairment with additional needs.

A community of 75,000 individuals, families, friends and professionals, sharing achievements, challenges and information on living with hydrocephalus or spina bifida, and related issues

Organisations for people with Undiagnosed Conditions

A project run by Genetic Alliance UK offering support and information to families of children with undiagnosed genetic conditions.

Organisations for people with Rare Conditions

Brittle Bone Society
UK wide organisation providing support to people affected by the bone condition Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI).

Cri Du Chat Syndrome Support Group
Aims to provide support to people with Cri du Chat syndrome by engaging with them and supporting their families, their carers and professionals. The CDCSSG will also strive to improve knowledge of CdCS by facilitating appropriate research into the syndrome with the hope of creating a better quality of life for all members of a Cri du Chat family.

A source of information and support to families and individuals affected by any rare chromosome disorder and to the professionals who work with them. Unique is a UK-based charity but welcomes members worldwide.

Organisations supporting Families and Carers

Carers Trust
Together with their Network Partners, they provide access to breaks, information and advice, education, training and employment opportunities. They give carers and young carers avenues to speak to someone and make their voices heard, offline via their carers' services and young carers' schemes and online via their interactive websites.

Carers UK
A charity set up to help the millions of people who care for family or friends. They provide information and advice about caring alongside practical and emotional support for carers. Carers UK also campaigns to make life better for carers and influences policy makers, employers and service providers, to help them improve carers' lives.

Carers Direct
Information, advice and support for carers, from financial and legal issues, to support for young carers, to real life stories. Shows local services available to you and offers free, confidential information and advice on 0808 802 0202.

Care for The Family
A national charity helping to support families. Part of that work includes Another Way, a telephone network for families with children with additional needs, headed up by Richard and Maggie Stapleton, who themselves have a child with additional needs.

Compassionate Friends
TCF is a charitable organisation of bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents dedicated to the support and care of other bereaved parents, siblings, and grandparents who have suffered the death of a child/children.

The Fledglings shop is run by Contact, the charity for families with disabled children. Contact brings families together to support each other and help families to campaign, volunteer and fundraise to improve life for themselves and others.

A childcare introductory service that recruits, screens and trains care-workers (Personal Assistants, PAs), bringing together families with disabled children or young adults and people who want to work caring for them.

Parent2Parent - Saffron Walden
Based in Saffron Walden, Essex, Parent 2 Parent holds monthly drop-in coffee mornings, to provide opportunities for those whose children have additional needs to meet others with whom they may have common ground, to share experiences and support one another.

The Grandparents' Association
The national charity which supports all grandparents and their families.

Supports siblings of all ages who are growing up with or who have grown up with a brother or sister with any disability, long term chronic illness, or life limiting condition.

Saffron Walden Opportunity Playgroup
Welcome to SWOP, a playgroup for children (0-5 years) with special needs, their parents/carers and under school age siblings.

Advice and Information  

An independent network of local disability information and advice services run by and for disabled people.

Supplies evidence-based information on a wide range of medical and health topics to patients and health professionals, with a discussion forum and UK Clinical Guidelines.

A charity that specialises in helping people access the money they need that is available to them - through benefits, grants and other official help. They have a free, accessible website which is a comprehensive and invaluable resource designed to help individuals find appropriate sources of financial support, quickly and easily, based on their particular needs and circumstances.


A national charity offering a unique service to help disabled adults and children use computers and the internet by adapting and adjusting their technology.

Online Communities

A family of local sites that cover the UK, offering information for mothers on a range of topics.

The UK’s busiest social network for parents.

Aids and Equipment

Bag Books
The only organisation in the world publishing multi-sensory stories for people with profound learning disabilities. Each year they reach around 15,000 children and adults with learning disabilities. Bag Books helps to enrich the lives and support the learning and development of children and adults with the most severe learning disabilities.

By adapting mainstream toys, Steps enables children to switch toys on and play independently by using whatever movement the child has, such as squeezing, pressing, bashing, blowing, or sucking. Steps provides a UK-wide free Developmental Toy and Switch Lending Library service and are experts in adaptation techniques and in the matching of toys and switches to the particular needs of each individual child.

Wish-granting Organisations

The ChildFlight charity offers flights and holidays for sick and deserving children of all ages.

Aims to make the dreams of children aged between 3 and 18 years, suffering from a diagnosed life limiting and life threatening illness, become a reality.

Dream Team
Grants the dreams and wishes of sick, disabled and terminally ill children in the UK. Based in South East Essex.

Dreams Come True
Helps to make dreams come true for seriously and terminally ill children across the country, including support for them in their everyday lives.

A registered UK charity that changes young lives through taking seriously ill and disabled children, without their parents, on the holiday of a lifetime to Orlando, Florida.

Happy Days
A national children's charity dedicated to providing holidays, residential trips, days out and theatre trips for disadvantaged young people with special needs; they offer help to those with learning difficulties, physical or mental disabilities and with acute, chronic or life limiting illnesses. They also help young people who have been abused or neglected, witnessed domestic violence, been bereaved or act as carers for a parent or a sibling.

Hase Foundation
Provides funding for all disabled people and carers who need financial help to cover the cost of holidays and or day trips.

Make a Wish
Grants magical wishes to children and young people fighting life-threatening illnesses. Make-A-Wish Foundation International is now the largest wish-granting organisation in the world.

The Starlight Foundation
Granting wishes to seriously and terminally ill children and entertaining over half a million children every year in hospitals and hospices.

Children's Organisations

Action for Children
A national children's charity, providing a wide range of services to children in care, disabled children, and young people, and campaigning for children, young people and families who face incredibly difficult situations.

The UK's leading childrens' charity. Barnardo's is committed to the principle of inclusion for disabled children and works with children from pre-school age to 16 plus. They support young people with special educational needs and those who have been, or are at risk of being, excluded from school. They also work with young disabled people who, because of their disability, have been denied access to normal everyday living and experiences. Barnardo’s has a significant number of services which provide short breaks for disabled children, enabling them to have new experiences and giving their families much needed respite.

The Fashion & Textile Children's Trust (FTCT)
The Fashion & Textile Children’s Trust (FTCT) was founded over 150 years ago, to support disadvantaged children, whose parents or carers work in the UK fashion and textiles industry.