“Paddy McGuinness and his wife Christine have three children, eight year-old twins Leo and Penelope, and five year-old Felicity. All three have been diagnosed with autism, a condition that means your brain works in a different way from other people, and can impact how you interact with the world.” This is the introduction to the … Continue reading Our Family And Autism – Paddy and Christine McGuinness – Helpful? Or Harmful?￼
There are an awful lots of Autism myths out there; most are ridiculous, some would actually be quite funny if they weren’t so harmful, but they do seem to somehow persist in the national consciousness. So, here’s my guide to the top ten Autism myths and how we can bust them: “We’re all ‘on the … Continue reading Busting Ten Autism Myths
Autumn is a fabulous time of the year, so many changes in the natural world and so many treasures to look for and find! We’ve been making a natural fiddles/fidget box, maybe you would like to make one too?There are loads of wonderful, sensory things that you can add to a natural fiddles/fidget box. I’ll … Continue reading Make A Natural Autumn Fiddles/Fidget Box!
'Invited to Belong' - a new additional needs training resource developed by Urban Saints in partnership with Youthscape - launched at the National Youth Ministry Weekend in Birmingham, November 2021. Additional Needs Ministry Director, Mark Arnold, presented the resource, alongside Jemimah Allen from Youthscape and then free copies of 'Invited to Belong' were given to … Continue reading Invited To Belong
They have done it again! Watching the John Lewis Christmas 2021 advert had me welling up in tears as I saw, once again, a story of inclusion unfolding before me. Like in 2019 with the story of Edgar the dragon and his friend Ava, the new advert showcases how to be inclusive of someone who … Continue reading How The John Lewis Christmas 2021 Advert Showcases Inclusion (Again!)
It’s that time of year when the nights start drawing in, the weather starts getting colder, nature starts to shut down in preparation for the winter ahead. It can be a time that can affect many of us mentally, as we struggle with the relative lack of sunlight and being cooped up at home more … Continue reading Self Care In The Darkness
One in five of the 13 million children and young people in the UK have additional needs of some kind, that’s approximately 2.5 million children and young people, yet many people, including lots of professionals, people running children's and youth work, and more, struggle to understand the best ways to be inclusive when engaging with … Continue reading Want To Be Inclusive? Just ASK!
There is a perception ‘out there’ that children who, for all kinds of reasons, are labelled or identified as ‘nonverbal’, are unable to communicate. That having less speech than other children (or no perceived speech at all) means that they cannot share how they are feeling, what they need, what they want to do, or … Continue reading Non-Verbal Doesn’t Mean Non-Communicative!
This week, the BBC announced a new presenter for their premier younger children’s media channel, CBeebies. What made this announcement newsworthy, and why in particular it matters to this blog, is that 20-year-old George Webster has Down’s Syndrome. CBeebies-BBC George isn’t the first BBC presenter to have a disability or difference; former CBeebies presenter Cerrie … Continue reading George Webster And CBeebies: Why Disability Representation Matters
The Disabled Children's Partnership (DCP), a campaigning body that I represent Urban Saints on, recently released the results of the latest in a series of surveys of families in the UK that have children and young people with additional needs. The results are stark, the impact of the last 18-months of the COVID-19 pandemic has … Continue reading Then There Was Silence…