Where do we go for help?
Over the three years we have been working towards “Paving the Way” many families have said to us “We knew there was a problem when our child was really young but we did not know who to go to for help.” Those families who did speak to a professional often found that person was as unsure as them about what to do.
This needs to change right now.
There are national reform programmes underway (including Transforming Care, the reform of the special educational needs and disability system and the Future in Mind reforms of children’s mental health services) which should all, in theory, mean that children and families get better support early on.
But many families and professionals still don’t know where to go to for help.
We have worked together to develop:
- A simple poster, to signpost families to a local team who can support them and to our website to find out more.
- A leaflet suitable for all frontline professionals and staff (including GPs, nurses, teachers, SENCOs, care and support staff, health professionals and Social Workers) to raise awareness of challenging behaviour and appropriate responses and to signpost them to more information.
We hope schools, pre-schools, Child Development centres, hospitals, GP surgeries and other health settings, short breaks providers, and any other children’s service providers will download and display these resources, including details of the support available locally for children with learning disabilities and behaviours described as challenging. This could be one small step on the path towards helping children and families to find the support they need.
Jacqui Shurlock, Early Intervention Project Manager
Heather Armstrong, Chair of the British Psychological Society Child Learning Disability Network and member of the National Learning Disability Senate