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Buddy Scheme Helps Families With Autistic Children

Elliot and Luke

5:22pm 13th August 2014

Families of Autistic children in Dorset are being offered short breaks at a reduced cost.  Community Wessex has been given more funds to run a buddy scheme.

A one hour session with a qualified carer will now cost parents £7.

Jo Pattison, Area Manager for Community Wessex said: "We want families to be aware they can access our short break service for this reduced cost.  A break, however short, can be invaluable so we are encouraging families to get in touch with us so we can assess their needs."

The scheme will take children, aged 8-18, out on short breaks including sporting activities, going to the cinema and much more, to provide family members with respite and to also give a child who needs support an opportunity to have a fun filled support session with a choice of activities.

Jo continues: "We know how tough life can be for some families, either needing respite care or simply finding activities for children during the summer holidays. We want to buddy up with anyone who needs support and offer any help we can."

Angela Carr from Weymouth has a severely autistic son and his brother has additional needs.  She says the support she gets is vital.

"Dealing with an Autistic child is very difficult.  You don't get much sleep. He's up all evening and on the go all the time and has no sense of danger whatever.  You have to watch him all the time.  So Wessex's support is very vital and all the staff are really nice as well."

"Sometimes we go out as a family, one member of Wessex comes along and takes care of Elliot and we get to do things together, like go to Weymouth Sealife Centre for the day."

If you want to access the scheme contact Community Wessex on 01202 853000 to book your session.

Visit www.autismwessex.org.uk for further information.

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