11th July 2019
The Including Parents Conference took place on Wednesday 15th may at Bestwood Lodge Hotel.
Taking over three rooms of the former royal hunting lodge, the conference gave parents of children with additional needs the opportunity to meet families in similar positions, as well as space to find out more about local groups, organisations, services and support available in Nottinghamshire.
Groups and organisations
The conference included a space for parents to talk to local organisations and groups and find out more about what support is available for parents of SEND children in Nottinghamshire. These included:
There were also a number of workshops available to attend, each covering a different topic:
Helping your child to recognise and
communicate their feelings
Workshop Provider: Alex Wright, Educational
How might your child be affected by their
senses and what strategies may help?
Workshop Provider: Linda Jones, Specialist
Teacher in Autism and Sensory Sensitivities
Developing confidence; getting your voice
Workshop Providers: Julie Rastall and Claire
Behavioural Stategies: Coping with Risky Behaviour
A workshop designed to explain to parents
how their children are managed in schools
should their behaviour become risky to
themselves or others
Workshop Provider: Jon Glover and Tricia
Clarke, Physical Intervention Team
Makaton: A Taster Session
An opportunity to find out more about
the benefits of Makaton for children’s
communication; learn up to 30 signs and
symbols; and how to access further training,
Workshop Provider: Helen Adams, Regional
Makaton Tutor/Speech and Language
Keynote speaker, Henry Normal delivered a well-received monologue, combining comedy, stories and poetry that centered on the life of his autistic son, Johnny. While his full speech cannot be repeated here, some choice quotes which really resonated with parents include:
“We decided to have a kid. I remember taking him home and thinking “what do we do now?!”
“You have to organise yourself, before you can help your kid. That’s why I love these events, it helps us organise ourselves.”
“They do say about autism; it’s not a fault in the operating system, it’s just a different operating system.”
“All kids want attention, appreciation, acceptance, ambition.”
After his speech, which had parents nodding in agreement and howing with laughter, Henry met with parents and signed copies of his book 'A Normal Life'.
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