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Parent Carer Resources

This resource provides both local and national support services and information to help you as a parent carer.

SEND Advice Service (formerly Parent Partnership Service)

To access this service you do not need a diagnosis or a care plan. They can offer advice on a wide number of topics. They are also able to help if a child is having difficulties at school.

Bedford Borough

Central Bedfordshire

Local Offer

This is a directory of local support services and groups for families with children with Special Educational Needs.

Bedford Borough

Central Bedfordshire

Parent Carer Forums

This service works to raise awareness of the issues groups of parents experience accessing local services.  They cannot work on individual cases (contact SEND Advice Service instead). They make sure that parents are represented on council boards.

Bedford

Central Bedfordshire – SNAP

They have an events calendar which covers all the local groups, training programmes and conferences in Bedfordshire.

Preparing for Adulthood

Moving from child to adult services can be difficult. You can contact the local councils Preparing for Adulthood Teams. They are able to support a young person with additional needs from 14 to 25 years old with health, social care, housing and education. You can self-refer especially If you have not been able to receive support from Children's Services as the criteria for children's social care and adult's social care is different. 

Bedford Borough Council

Central Bedfordshire Council

Working Families has recently published "From Child to Adult Transition Guide". It outlines what happens to benefits and family finances when young disabled children become adults. It includes information on help with travel, banking, employment rights and more.

Parent Carer Groups in Bedfordshire

FACES offers practical and emotional support to families under stress. They run a number of support groups. For example, Spectrum Support is a parent-to-parent Autism and ADHD Group. Dad & Me is a group for dads and their children. For more information, visit.

Families in Focus CIC  aims to enable parents to support their children to lead happy and healthy lives.  They run a Parent Network which supports parents caring for children with Autism, ADHD, PDA, Downs Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy and additional needs. They run groups in Biggleswade and Harpenden. For more information, visit

Families United Network provides support for children with disabilites and additional needs.

The Avenue, Biggleswade provides support for families with a child with autism.

Carers in Bedfordshire run Parents Together Groups in Bedford, Biggleswade and Leighton Buzzard

Local Support for Parents

Bedfordshire Mental Health and Wellbeing Service are running a number of information sessions for parents and carers. For more information.

ParentLine is a confidential text messaging advice and support line for parents and carers of children aged 0-19. It is run by the Bedfordshire Community Health Service. You can access advice on a range of subjects such as sleep, emotional health as well as make an appointment with the team.

One-stop shop for all health care needs related to children with special educational needs, Child Development Centre, Kempston   

The Grove, Bedford. This is a Pregnancy Advice Centre which supports those whom a pregnancy & the 1st year of parenting presents financial difficulties. It provides baby clothing and loans out buggies, moses baskets, cots etc. free of charge.

Looking after your mental health as a parent

Healthwatch England has provided a list of national support organisations which can support you. For more information.

Mummy Mental Health Support Group - For mums who have PND, PTSD, birth trauma, anxiety, depression or struggling and feeling isolated.  Part of the Butterflies Community
Fairfield Park Lower School, Stotfold
Tuesday 9.30am to 11.301m - term-time only
Find on Facebook or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Expectant & New Mums concerned about their mental health
To read more / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

For more groups and resources to support your mental health in Bedfordshire, visit

National Support for Parents

Council for Disabled Children provides a number of resources for parents to a child with a disability or special educational needs.

Dad Info - Free and expert advice and support for Fathers

Navigate: parent mentoring by Scope is for parents whose child has recently received a diagnosis in the last year

Parents Helpline by Young Minds - If you are worried about the behaviour, mental health or emotional wellbeing of a child or young person under 25: Young Minds runs a Parent Helpline where you can ask a trained advisor for help and advice.

Young Parents Advice 0808 801 0366  Supporting young parents whose children are in needs, deemed at risk, in care or adopted.  Section specifically for young fathers

EHCP

EHCP - coming soon.

Working and Caring

Carers in Bedfordshire – Training and Employment Resources provides a comprehensive list of support available in Bedfordshire and beyond.

Working Families advice leaflets on Benefits, Rights at Work & Flexible Working

The Waving not Drowning Network - for people combining working and caring

Returning to work whilst bringing up a child with Down's Syndrome - a Blog from Working Families 

Supporting mental wellbeing in children

Local Mental Health Services for children & young people

CAMHS (Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services – ELFT).  They are producing a series of podcasts called CAMHS Talk.

Caraline - Supporting adults and children living with eating disorders

Chums - Mental Health & Emotional Wellbeing Services for Children & Young People

Counselling service in Bedford -  Open Door - for young people aged between 10 and 25 years.

Counselling service in Dunstable - Sorted Counselling Services - for young people aged between 10 and 25 years.

Other resources

Managing Anxiety in Autism for Parents

If your child is experiencing suicidal thoughts, contact Papyrus for support

Young Minds provides a range of resources to support a child or young person mental health.

Online services for children & young people

Kooth.com - an online counselling service -

For young people between 13 to 25 years old, you can contact THE MIX who provides a free, confidential support service offering help through phone, text, web and social media.

Dealing with the Death of a Child

If you are caring for child with a life-limiting condition you can contact Keech Hospice Care – 0800 035 6497 24/7 for help and advice.

Children’s Funeral Fund has been set up to help families with financial support after a loss of a child.

Child Bereavement UK has produced a number of Short Guidance Films on how to support a child dealing with death.

Parent Carer Stories

Bimla's Story - I will never forget that day
Darran’s Story - Caring & Running  
Nicola's Story - Volunteering for Healthwatch
Yvonne’s Story - Going Out

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