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Parent Carer Information Bulletin May 2013

Welcome to this month’s information bulletin for parents and carers of disabled children.

Sunderland Parent Carers’ Group

The next meeting will take place on

Thursday 9th May
10am – 12 noon
at Sunderland Carers’ Centre, Thompson Park, Thompson Road, Sunderland SR5 1SF

The guest speaker will be Joanne Scott, Carers Breaks and Opportunities Scheme.

Houghton Parent Carer Coffee Morning

The next coffee morning will take place on

Monday 20th May
10am – 12 noon
at Houghton Primary Care Centre, Brinkburn Crescent, Houghton-le-Spring DH4 5HB

Washington Parent Carers’ Group

The next meeting will take place on

Wednesday 22nd May
10am – 12 noon
at Rainbow Family Centre, 34 Elliott Terrace, Concord, Washington NE37 3AE

We look forward to seeing you.

Lisa Watson. and Wendy Greenhow

Parent Carer Development Worker

Sunderland Carers' Centre

For more information please contact Lisa Watson or Wendy Greenhow at Sunderland Carers’ Centre

Tel: (0191) 549 3768.

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.

Parent Carer Trip – Wednesday 10th July

We know it is early, but we thought we would let you know, that this year we have decided to go Bowling and then for a meal before the Summer Holidays.

If you would like to join us the plan is to meet at 11am, at 1st Bowl, High Street West, (Sunniside), River Quarter, Sunderland, SR1 1TR, then to walk down to Sambucca’s restaurant for a meal. We don’t expect all of this to cost any more than £10 per person (£1.50 per person for a game, and £3.99 for a special 3 course meal). Parking is free in Sunniside car park, when you stamp your ticket at 1st Bowl.

If you would like to join us, give us a ring on (0191) 549 3768 and leave your details with reception, by Friday 5th July!

See you all there – Lisa & Wendy

Carers Week logoCarers Week Trip – Wednesday 12th June

To celebrate Carers Week (10 – 16 June) Sunderland Carers’ Centre are organising a coach trip to Harrogate on Wednesday 12th June. The coach will depart from Toward Road bus stop next to Mowbray Park at 9.45am prompt and plans to arrive back about 5.30pm. The cost is £4 per carer (non-refundable). Please call into the Carers’ Centre or phone (0191) 549 3768 from Tuesday 7th May to book. Places are limited. Your place will be confirmed on payment of your £4. Payment must be in cash (no cheques) and must be received by Tuesday 28th May. Carers must book individually (no block bookings) and must be over the age of 18.

Change of Details

If you have changed or are changing your phone number (particularly mobiles) or email address, please could you let the Carers’ Centre know so that we can amend our records. Recently we have tried to contact some carers but the phone numbers are no longer recognised. Call us on (0191) 549 3768 or email

Wear Mencap

Wear Mencap is a charity based in the Sunderland and County Durham area for young people with learning disabilities and their families and carers.

They provide sports and learning opportunities including swimming lessons at Sandhill Centre on Saturday afternoons, lane swimming on Wednesday nights, football at Houghton Leisure Centre on Sunday afternoons and boccia at Great Lumley Methodist Church on Sunday afternoons with a parents support group. Throughout every school holiday they run holiday schemes for school age children up to 19 at Great Lumley and various venues around Sunderland. There are also camping trips and away breaks and family days at different venues. There are lots of other things on offer too.

To find out more contact Wear Mencap on (0191) 388 3401 or click here to visit their website

South of Tyne and Wearside Deaf Children’s Society

This is a new local group in the north east to provide help and support to parents of deaf children. If you are interested in joining them for monthly activities, please email or join them on facebook.

Transition Support Group

The next meeting of the Transition Support Group will take place on Thursday 30th May, 10.30am – 12 noon, at Sunderland Carers’ Centre, Thompson Park, Thompson Road, Sunderland SR5 1SF. The group is open to all carers of young people going through transition from children’s services to adult services. For more information please contact Eibhlin Inglesby or Helen McAdam on (0191) 549 3768.

Sunderland City Council logoDisability Specific Swim Sessions

The next disability specific swim session will take place on Saturday 25th May, 4pm – 5pm, at Silksworth Community Pool, Tennis and Wellness Centre. The price is £2.10 per person or £5 for a family ticket (maximum 2 adults and 2 young people). For more information please contact their reception on (0191) 561 5900.

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. The group meets fortnightly.

The next meetings are on Monday 13th May and Monday 27th May, from 11.30am – 1pm at SNYP, 272 Southwick Road, Southwick, Sunderland SR5 1DD.

For more information phone Mandy Colman on (0191) 519 2461 or 07788211154 or email You can also visit them on facebook.

Useful Vision logoUseful Vision Activities

The following activities have been arranged for families in the North East who have children with a visual impairment:

Bounce baby and toddler group. Drop in and meet other parents and have a chat then chill in the music and movement session with Piccolo Music. Siblings are welcome too. Tuesday 7th May, 10am – 12 noon, Silksworth Tennis and Wellness Centre.

Tees Barrage at Stockton on Tees. Sunday 12th May. Visually impaired children and their siblings over 8 years can enjoy some wild water fun in sailing and bell boats. Refreshments will be provided.

Animation workshops in Gateshead. Saturday 18th May. Get creative! Visually impaired children can learn how to use ipads and the latest apps to create their own animated stories. Results will be shown to families and friends at the end of the session (morning and afternoon sessions).

Alan Shearer Centre, Newcastle. Saturday 25th May, 11am – 3pm. Useful Vision families will have use of all the facilities including sensory rooms, ball pool, music room and hydrotherapy pool. Additional art and craft and interactive activities will be provided by Sensory Spaces.

Art workshops at The Baltic, Gateshead. Wednesday 29th May, 10am – 3pm. Families will be able to have a tour of the interactive Fabrice Hyber exhibition and then create some fantastic pieces inspired by the exhibition and led by The Baltic artists. There will also be a messy anything goes art workshop

If you would like to register for any of these events, be put on the mailing list for future activities or to find out more about the family support services contact the office on 0845 6048491, email or visit them on facebook

Father and son in the library.Activities at Sunderland Libraries

Children’s half term holiday
Sunderland Libraries will be holding free children’s craft activities during May half term. For further information contact your local library closer to the time.

Dads ‘n’ Kids Club
Saturday 18th May, 10.30am – 11.30am, at City Library and Arts Centre. This is a free activity for children up to 12 years and their parent / carer. Mums are welcome! There is no need to book but for more information please contact the City Library on (0191) 561 1235.

National Storytelling Month
The month of May is National Storytelling Month, so during this time come into the story corner in the City Library and see the fabulous knitted story book characters loaned by the Materialistics.

AuKids Magazine

AuKids magazine is a positive parenting magazine for families with children on the autism spectrum.

The editors, who are a speech and language therapist specialising in autism, and a journalist, who is mum to autistic twins, say "AuKids offers practical help and support. We do not promote individual therapies or programmes. Rather we act as a guide to what’s out there and help parents to make sound decisions for themselves.”  It costs £10 a year for four issues.

For more information call AuKids on (0161) 436 6643, email or

click here to visit their website

Sunderland Carers’ Centre will bring free samples of the magazine along to the next Parent Carer Coffee Mornings for you to have a look at.

Thinking about siblings of children with autism

Joy Tsai is a PhD student at the University of Edinburgh with a particular interest in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). She has a sibling with special needs. She is currently conducting research to explore the experiences of typically developing brothers and sisters of children with ASD in Taiwan and the UK. Her goal is to understand sibling experiences, how they cope with any difficulties, the support they make use of and the role that culture and sibling characteristics play in coping strategy use. She hopes the research will help to identify the best ways to support siblings of children with ASD in the future. Joy is looking for families with a child with autism and typically developing child who is aged 9 – 17 years to take part in a survey. If you are interested in finding out more phone 07428169400, email, visit or

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