What would you do? By Tina Waltz

What would you do? By Tina Waltz

Tina Waltz is the Support Lead for The Roses, an Autism Accredited service run by Hightown Housing Association, providing supported living for people with Autism and Learning Disabilities. Tina has worked at the service since it opened 15 years ago.

Picture the scene. You see a man shouting. He’s with a woman who seems to be trying to calm him down. Are they a couple? Is she in danger? What should you do?

It can be a difficult decision but take a moment to assess the situation. Is the woman he is with supporting him?

Guide dogs left barking at the door 

Dan Williams, holding Zodiac on a lead, blogs on life with Guide Dogs

Daniel Williams, the founder of Visualise Training and Consultancy, has a canine carer and here gives an honest account of life with Guide Dogs.

As someone with a severe visual impairment, my assistance dog is a vital part of my life, both as a guide and friend. We have a special bond that you will understand if you have seen the Sponsor a Guide Dog ads on TV. They show just how much assistance dogs give independent lives back to people with visual impairments, and how that independence is to be treasured.

Student Volunteers Gain Valuable Experience Through Accessibility Mark

Student Volunteers Gain Valuable Experience Through Accessibility Mark

In 2018 Sparsholt College in Hampshire became the 50thcentre to gain Accessibility Mark accreditation, with the aim of expanding its services to disabled riders.

Horse riding has many well-documented therapeutic benefits for disabled people but, as a recent study by RDA found out, it can also have a huge impact on the volunteers that support participants.

Full-time students undertaking one of the range of equine courses on offer at the college are actively encouraged to volunteer with the Accessibility Mark sessions that take place every week, to help build their portfolio and improve their employment skills.

Imagination Gaming... Taking Great Leaps for Gaming Kind

Imagination Gaming

Imagination Gaming founder Nigel Scarfe discovered the power of games while playing Dungeons and Dragons as a child.

At the time, he was struggling to keep up in school and he found that the game expanded the way he used his mind and subsequently gave him a better understanding of maths and English in school.

Fast forward a fair few years and that valuable lesson is helping Nigel’s company (IG) pave the way for innovative games based learning by taking it back to more traditional board and card games with great results.

So much so that the gaming industry is starting to take notice of this small but mighty team.

How can you help your child worry less?

help your child worry less

It is distressing to see a child who is anxious. No matter how much you try to reassure them and tell them not to worry, anxiety can affect all aspects of their life and be disruptive to family life as well. There are sources of help, through school, the GP and counselling, but resources are thin on the ground these days and in many places only the most extreme cases are referred to child counselling services.

The Art of Independent Living - at 99!

The Art of Independent Living - at 99!

With an ageing population, finding centenarians who clock up a hundred years is becoming less rare, but finding a 99 year old enjoying independent living is still quite a find. 

Miss Jean Butchart is her own boss, with her own home, friends and hobbies. When asked what her secret was, Miss Butchart retorted, “Your guess is as good as mine”. Admittedly there’s no magic wand or secret potion.

Born in Newcastle, Jean Butchart moved to Scotland aged six months where she grew up until qualifying as a teacher in Domestic Science and Home Economics. During the war Miss Butchart taught in a Herefordshire school until a role in Aberdeen’s College of Domestic Science brought Jean to the Granite City in 1948. 

Computershare helps Edinburgh resident with learning disabilities realise dream

Karl Levy - Computershare analyst
Computershare, a leading financial services provider, is helping an Edinburgh resident with learning disabilities to achieve his dream job.  

Karl Levy, who has Asperger syndrome and dyslexia, is working as an apprentice operations analyst at Computershare’s city-based Leven House.

Computershare supports Karl with specialist equipment and training, while his co-workers are being taught how to communicate effectively with people with Asperger syndrome and dyslexia.

Mark McDougall, Global CIO at Computershare, said: “Computershare is an equal opportunities employer that takes its responsibility to nurture all talent extremely seriously, and we are delighted that Karl is progressing well.”

Clearwell Mobility becomes the South East’s exclusive supplier of the NINO

Clearwell Mobility NINO Wheelchairs

Clearwell Mobility has taken delivery of a new state-of-the-art powerchair – the NINO - which offers a unique mobility solution, combining a Segway with a wheelchair.

The NINO enables users to go forwards and backwards by moving their torso and also has the ability to connect a smartphone to monitor and control the powerchair. With two central wheels, users can turn sideways and completely rotate instantly, without going backwards and forwards.

Designed and manufactured in France, and modelled to distract from disability, the NINO is a fashionable powerchair that focuses on design and individuality for the rider. At less than half the length of a traditional wheelchair, it enables users even more freedom to move around, without the frustration of a traditional chair.

Autism’s Got Talent and Autism with Attitude to perform at the Apple flagship store in Covent Garden

Autism with Attitude dance group - Autism's Got Talent

Autism’s Got Talent and Autism with Attitude to perform at the Apple flagship store in Covent Garden during World Autism Awareness Week 1-7 April 2019

On Friday 5th April 2019 at 5:30pm, Apple’s flagship store in Covent Garden, London, will be abuzz with energy when Autism with Attitude (AWA) – the groundbreaking street dance group from Hillingdon Manor School, Uxbridge – showcase their moves as part of World Autism Awareness Week, 1-7 April. The dance troupe – whose tenacity and talent has inspired millions – will be joined by performers from Autism’s Got Talent, the show created by Anna Kennedy OBE, Autism Ambassador for Options Autism, to raise public awareness of the condition and give adults and children with autism the chance to shine.

The slowly shifting social norms of disability in Britain, 2009 - Today

The slowly shifting social norms of disability in Britain, 2009 - Today

It was 10 years ago to the year, in 2009, when the UK government threw its weight behind the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD). The ratification of the convention was met with thunderous applause in the disabled community, and was seen as the beginning of the end of outdated notions towards disability.

The UNCRPD marked a seismic shift in attitudes towards the disabled – at least on paper. The crux of the Convention was the re-focusing of disabled attitudes away from what is known as the “medical” view, to a more progressive social model.

The Hytte – Accessible self-catering holiday cottage near Hexham in Northumberland

The Hytte – Accessible self-catering holiday cottage near Hexham in Northumberland

The Hytte is award winning, accessible, self-catering accommodation for eight people. 

Guests love the character of this Norwegian inspired traditional timber Hytte or mountain lodge with its grass roof. Luxury rated as five star Gold and designed from the outset as a great “get together” venue which has been adapted to meet the needs of guests with disabilities, ensuring all family members and friends can enjoy a holiday together.

Mathilda and the Orange Balloon

Mathilda and the Orange Balloon
UK Tour: February – May 2019

Mathilda and the Orange Balloon brings a diverse cast of Deaf and hearing actors to the stage to follow the story of Mathilda, a little grey sheep whose mind is always full of questions. Join her on a journey of self-discovery as she learns the joys of self-expression and see how, with a little imagination and a big open mind, anything is possible! The DH Ensemble have made Mathilda’s world fully welcoming and accessible to D/deaf and hearing children and their families through the use of spoken English, British Sign Language, creative captions and animation.

New Glamping Site Expands Near York

New Glamping Site Expands Near York

A luxury glamping site that opened less than a year ago is expanding thanks to the success of the business.

Wigwam® Holidays Ball Hall Farm, owned by the Medley family, is just outside the village of Storwood near York and is about seven miles from Pocklington, North Yorkshire.

The site, which currently has six Running Water Deluxe Wigwam® Cabins in place, is set to take delivery of three more deluxe cabins and three brand new Accessible Running Water Deluxe Cabins, which are suitable for wheelchair users and their carers. The additional cabins make a total of twelve units at the working farm site.

Emma Medley said: “We opened in June 2018 and had a busy first season, thanks to the glorious summer last year and to the quality of the en-suite Wigwam® Cabins

New tours available for Deaf visitors at Wheal Martyn Clay Works 

New tours available for Deaf visitors at Wheal Martyn Clay Works 

Wheal Martyn Clay Works in St Austell has launched their first ever British Sign Language (BSL) tour, to help Deaf visitors that use BSL, to gain a deeper understanding of the clay mine’s unique history.

With over 50,000 people in the UK using BSL as their first language, English may be difficult for some to fully understand, so providing written information or using subtitles in films may not be enough. By producing a BSL guided tour, Wheal Martyn will help their Deaf visitors, to gain a better appreciation of the history of the site and become much more involved in their visit.

Increasing awareness to increase blood donor numbers

Increasing awareness to increase blood donor numbers

As the NHS Blood and Transplant service in England look to increase donor numbers by nearly 5,000 in February, a cord blood collection and storage company have released a guide to blood donations and collections to help raise awareness and encourage more people to donate.

Cord blood collection and storage company, www.smartcells.com choose to support several relevant awareness events throughout the year, using their expertise and influence to highlight the key messages of each campaign and encourage support from others where they can. This year they have created and released a Guide to Blood Donations and Collections to help build awareness.