Parents of Children with Learning Difficulties how to get help in the UK

All parents will encounter times when they will need to seek help or advice in coping with their children. Parents of children with difficulties will need to seek help and advice that is specifically tailored to the needs of their child.

Healthcare

The maim sources of help in the UK can easily be accessed through discussions with healthcare providers such as midwives, health visitors and GPs. These are usually the first people to approach if you need to access help. They will be able to provide information about services locally that are available to support you and your child. In addition to this, they will have access to resources and contacts that will provide extra support. Healthcare providers are also able to make referrals to specialist services that parents of children with learning difficulties may need such as speech and language therapists, psychologists and play therapists.

 

SureStart Children’s Centres

There are more than 3,600 centres in England. They bring all the different support agencies for children and their families together in one easily accessible place. Children’s centres provide play, learning and socialising opportunities for children and professional advice on health and family matters, training and employment opportunities for parents as well as a place to socialise with other parents.

The services available in each centre depend on the local area but many include access to dentists, dietitians and physiotherapists, fast access to expert advice and support managing behaviour and learning issues and parenting classes.

Schools

Schools work very closely with health and social care providers and if you need to access help for a child with learning difficulties they are an excellent place to begin. If your child has learning difficulties the school is probably already aware of this and should already have support in place for your child. Most schools have teams of staff including a Educational Needs Coordinators (SENCo), teaching assistants and other support staff that work closely with children who have learning difficulties. Find out who these people are in your child’s school and talk to them. They have access to a wide range of resources and should know who else can help your child. School staff will also be able to help you to understand better how to help your child at home.

Books and the Internet

In recent years there has been an increase in information about children with learning difficulties. There are numerous books and websites containing informative and self help books that can provide help, support, advice and resources for parents. These will also often advertise the services of charities that can provide support. If you have access to the Internet you have at your fingertips a range of additional help, support, advice and services.