Although the support group has been around for 30 years it became a forum after the Aiming High for Disabled Children programme instigated the development of local parent carer forums nationally. Both Nottingham City and Nottinghamshire families have been involved in shaping and influencing services via representation at Local Authority steering, strategy and task groups and also at commissioning level. Parent‛s voices are also heard via the National Parent Carers Forum as members of this network meet with the Department of Education and the ministers on a regular basis.
The value of parents/carers participation is recognised by the current Government and following the publication of the SEN Green Paper Support and Aspiration: A new approach to Special Educational Needs & Disability, the Department for Education is supporting the continuity of parent/carer participation via funding until 2015 to support the further development of parents and carers participation.
A brief introduction...
Rainbow Parents Carers Forum is a support group and voice for parents &
carers who have a child with a disability or additional needs. We are a parent
led organisation whose mission is to "Support and Empower Families to be Heard
and Achieve Better Outcomes".
What do we do?
- Run regular inclusive family activities including 2 monthly support sessions for parents/carers, with advice on education, health, social care and benefits.
- Participate in and influence local decision making on services for disabled children, young people and their families.
- Keep parents and carers informed via our ‘virtual forum’ and peer network.
- Offer training to parents, carers and professionals.
- Work in partnership with the local authority to deliver personal plans for children & young people with disabilities.
- Host monthly surgeries at our offices for Ask Us Nottinghamshire (formerly Parent Partnership Services) and the Disabled Children's Team - see the news page and calendar for dates and times.
P2P Support (Parent to parent 1:1 support)
We now offer parent to parent 1:1 support at all of our activities - monthly P2P meetings (formerly coffee mornings), twice monthly Saturday Rainbow sessions and monthly swim sessions. Booking is essential. To book 1:1 support, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or ring 0115 9348451.
Annual Event 2016 - 24th March
Our 5th Annual Event took place on Thursday 24th March 2016 at NCVS.
Steve Broach, SEN Barrister, again presented at the event, speaking on where we are on the SEND reforms and on the Mental Capacity Act. Also presenting was Emma Weatherdon from Contact a Family. As we are celebrating 30 years as a parent support group this year we also had Sue and Alex Hopkinson (mother and son) talking about their experiences over the years.