A new life
Life as a new mum, to a baby who was later diagnosed with autism, turned our world upside down. The joy of having a child was coupled with isolation, sleeplessness, and constant challenges. After briefly finding support at a local charity, this quickly shut down, leaving us once again alone.
Every week I heard the same story of families struggling to get help, struggling to get their child’s needs recognised, siblings struggling. We decided to create a safe place for families to meet regularly to make friends who understood their situation. A place where children with additional needs could have fun, regardless of whether any professionals recognised their need for help. A place where the whole family could receive support.
Knowing there were other families in the same situation as us, we couldn’t leave those families without support. We invited families to come to our local church hall, everyone brought toys, some brought cakes while others brewed some hot tea and welcomed everyone who turned up.
Our Saturday group grew quickly as other families heard about us. We formalised our group into a charity and quickly began to open three days a week. Setting everything up from scratch each session with a team of parent volunteers.
Living with additional needs can be very stressful for a child with a disability. Life also becomes challenging for siblings, parents and carers. I want to help other families find the right help and support. I want families to always find a listening ear while they enjoy a freshly brewed coffee. I want them to leave each Incredible Kids session stronger and more resilient. Incredible Kids brings hope.
I’ve made many mistakes along the way but learnt from them. Incredible Kids is an organisation that can respond quickly to change and is resilient in the face of challenges. Having a child with a disability can be a great blessing but the situation also brings loneliness, a strain on marriages, emotional impact on siblings, financial pressure, broken relationships with family, difficulty sustaining friendships and at times a feeling of brokenness. Incredible Kids brings friendship, a listening ear and a place where families can have fun together. As a family we have made lifelong friends, laughed together, cried together, learned together, and grown together.