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Additional Support Needs Youth Club Sessions

MAYDS originally started a block of dance therapy sessions for young people with additional support needs and disabilities back in early 2019, the young people enjoyed attending and parents told us most of their children had never had access to other activities before due to their needs. When the block was due to finish and the dance therapist had to move on to other commitments, we decided we would continue with sessions and run it as youth club activities because we passionately believe that all young people should be included and have access to activities, regardless of any condition a young person has.

The sessions initially began with two or three young people attending, over the years with a lot of perseverance, a lot of training, experience from working in the school learning centre and gaining the trust of families, the Additional Support Needs Sessions have proven to be a valuable source of support for the children and their families.

We currently have a total of 16 young people with additional support needs that look to access one of the two sessions provided on a weekly basis. Each session provides one to one support for young people, this ensures their needs are fully met while they participate in activities they enjoy, all activities are tailored to suit their needs and abilities.

The one to one support also means that parents of the young person are able to leave their child at sessions knowing they are supported and have a short break and spend time doing things they may not normally be able to do or spend quality time with other family members.

Once a month we hold a session over at the local swimming pool, an adult must accompany their young person in the pool but MAYDS staff are in the pool and poolside to support families where needed. This may be by helping with the young person or by supporting a sibling, we can also help to watch a child while the adult gets themselves changed after the session, sees to their other child etc.

At each session, young people have the option of various activities, they also have the option of using different areas, one being the sensory room. The sensory room has black out blinds, soft play, bean bags, sensory lights and equipment. 

Children are welcome to bring snacks if they wish but we can provide snacks such as crisps and fruit along with a drink of water. 

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