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Parent Carer Information Bulletin December 2015

Welcome to this month’s information bulletin for parents and carers of children with special educational needs and disabilities up to the age of 25.

Parent Carer Coffee Mornings

There are no parent carer coffee mornings in December but there will be a Christmas Meal - see below for details.

If you need information, advice or support please contact Sunderland Carers' Centre on (0191) 549 3768.

Parent Carers Christmas Meal

Thursday 3rd December
12 noon
The Italian Kitchen, Thompson Road, Southwick

3 courses for £13.95

If you are a parent or carer of a child with special educational needs and disabilities aged up to 25 and would like to attend our Christmas Meal please contact the Carers' Centre on (0191) 549 3768 to book your place. Please also give us your menu choice.

Click here to view the menu

Parent Carer Survey

Thank you to those parent carers who have completed our parent carer survey so far.  If you have not completed the survey there is still time to do so. The survey will only take a few minutes to complete and the results will help us plan the future of our services. The survey closes Monday 30th November.

Click here to take part

Information, Activities and Events

For more details on any of the information, activities or events mentioned below please contact the organisations directly or Sunderland Carers’ Centre on (0191) 549 3768.

Santa at Jingle Bell Square - for children with special needs or a disability

A relaxed session at South Shields Museum & Art Gallery, especially for children who may find a trip to see Santa a little overwhelming. Santa’s elves will be around to help children with craft activities and Santa will be in the Victorian Streets so children can choose how and when to approach him to collect their gift. Booking is essential so the museum can ensure it does not become too crowded.

South Shields Museum & Art Gallery, Tyne and Wear
Saturday 12th December 2015
Doors open at 11am
From 11am to 12 noon
Ticket Price: £5.00*
*booking fee applies

Click here to book

Aladdin Relaxed Performance at Sunderland Empire

Thursday 17th December at 1.30pm.  Tickets from £10.

Relaxed performances are primarily designed for patrons who may be concerned about attending a theatrical
performance and may find visiting the theatre daunting. They are informal performances that are designed to benefit
patrons with additional needs, such as autism, ADHD, dementia, young children or anyone who would benefit from a
more relaxed environment.

Click here for more information

Sunderland, Washington and Coalfields Parent Carer Council

Please note the Parent Carer Council meeting on 11th December has been cancelled.  The next meeting will take place on Friday 15th January, 10am - 12 noon, at Sunderland Carers' Centre, Thompson Park, Thompson Road, Sunderland SR5 1SF.

Useful Vision

Useful Vision helps families with blind or sight impaired children get the most out of life. They run fun activities for children from 0 – 19 across the region. All activities are free to families registered with them.

Click here for the December activity programme

If you would like to register for any of these events, be put on the mailing list for future activities or find out more contact 0845 6048491 or email

Wonderful Wizard of Oz – Relaxed Performance

Northern Stage in Newcastle are offering a relaxed performance of their seasonal show The Wonderful Wizard of Oz on Wednesday 16th December at 2pm

This dedicated performance is specifically designed to welcome those who will benefit from a more relaxed environment. This could be because your party includes someone with an Autism Spectrum Condition, sensory and communication disorders or a learning disability.

A cyclone sweeps Dorothy away from her grey boring life to Technicolor Oz. She’d rather keep her trainers than wear ruby slippers, but she’s ready for an adventure. Join Dorothy, Toto, Scarecrow, Tin Man and Lion this Christmas for a brand new re-twisted production of the classic children’s story. Expect magic, mayhem and new music in this festive treat. 

Tickets cost £9.50 (carers go free) Suggested age range 7+. For full information and booking details, visit the Northern Stage website - click here

ADHD Support Group

Are you a parent of a child with ADHD?  The Sunderland ADHD Support Group is run by parents themselves and they offer each other advice and support.

There are no meetings in December, however, you can still email the group for information or visit their facebook page.


Supporting SEND: Transition to Uni - Parents' Evening

Wednesday 20th January

5pm - 7.30pm

Northumbria University

The North East Raising Aspiration Partnership is holding a Parents' Evening called Supporting SEND: Transition to Uni at Northumbria University to highlight the support services available for young people's progression through to Higher Education.

The evening is for parents and carers who have young people in Year 11 and above, with expert staff available to inform you of the available support at Higher Education and Disabled Students Allowance (DSA). There will also be a variety of optional workshops aimed to equip you with enough information to assist your young person at this important time.

Click here for more information and to book

Free Winter Events at The Alan Shearer Centre

The Alan Shearer Centre in Newcastle is holding a number of free Winter Events this December.

Click here for details

Christmas Extravaganza Days at Sunderland Libraries

The City Library and Arts Centre and Washington Town Centre Library are holding Christmas Extravaganza Days on Saturday 5th December.  Click on the links below to find out more.

City Library and Arts Centre activities 1

City Library and Arts Centre activities 2

Washington Town Centre Library activities 1

Washington Town Centre Library activities 2

Reading Hack Group

Sunderland Libraries are starting a Reading Hack Group for young people aged 13+ at Washington Town Centre Library to support and promote reading and digital activities to children and young people in Sunderland Libraries. Reading Hack Groups are supported by The Reading Agency. They will decide as a group how often they would like to meet and what kind of activities the group would like to be involved in and are open to suggestions. The first meeting will take place on Wednesday 2nd December from 4pm to 5pm at Washington Town Centre Library.

Click here for more details