Who do you work for?
We are a voluntary group made up of parents and carers (with parental responsibility) that all have children with varying levels of SEN from a range of different needs. We are completely independent from any statutory body and representative of our members.
But surely you are funded by someone to do their work
We receive a grant from the Department of Education and other smaller organisations to facilitate the participation of parents and carers in the development and monitoring of services. The work we do is all for parents and carers, so that they can get the best for their children and young people.
So do you campaign?
We are not a campaign group, but we do recognise the importance of campaign groups in getting voices heard. We are happy to work with campaign groups to take and present the views of their members, and to signpost them to any information that they may need.
Are you a support group?
We are not a support group, but we facilitate opportunities for parents and carers to come and tell their stories and experiences. Sometimes thats with professionals, other times that is with another parent carer, a cup of tea and a slice of cake. We are a supportive of you and encourage participation at whatever level you feel comfortable.
Can anyone be involved in Stockton Parent Carer Forum?
In order to be a member of the forum, you must be a parent or carer (with parental responsibility) of a child with SEND aged 0-25 living in Stockton on Tees. There are more than one way to be involved with the forum though, if you’re an auntie, nana, godfather or have any experience of working/living with children and young people with SEND then you are welcome to be a volunteer.
I work, so I can't be a parent carer, can I?
A parent carer is any person over the age of 18 that has parental responsibility for a child that has a disability.
Lillian, has a son who has complex physical disabilities and severe learning difficulties, she does not have a traditional job or career, and spends all her time looking after him, taking him to school and appointments making sure he has access to all the right specialist treatment at therapies. Lillian is a parent carer.
Matthew works full time as a website developer, he starts work early so that he can get home for when his 11 year old daughter gets home from school. She is autistic and her routine is very rigid and struggles with transitions. When she gets in from school, Matthew spends time with her doing activities provided by speech and language, then occupational therapy as she has sensory processing difficulties. Every night they follow the same routine and Matthew must sit by her bed until she falls asleep. Matthew is woken at least once a night as she struggles to sleep and suffers from night terrors. Matthew is a parent carer.
What can I do, I'm just one voice
Providing your experiences, your struggles, victories, thoughts and opinions, you can make change. By responding to any consultations we have that are relevant to you, or providing feedback on a service good or bad provides us with evidence when we feedback to services and commissioners. This way we can make sure that the children and young people with SEND and their families in Stockton are able to access the services that they need