About our charity
We help children under 5 years with cerebral palsy and other motor learning impairments make the best possible start in life – giving our families the support and skills to continue their development at home.
We celebrate the children we work with, no matter their ability, to show parents and the wider world everything they can do.
Children with cerebral palsy struggle to learn fundamental skills. They do not have the typical early experiences of their peers because of their disabilities. They are often excluded from everyday activities in their communities and unable to attend mainstream nursery provision, limiting their opportunities for socialisation and integration. They are at risk of isolation and early intervention is crucial.
We provide an early intervention service based on the methodology of Conductive Education.
- Parents and children work together in a supportive environment
- We focus on improving a child’s physical, social and emotional skills
- Sessions are hand-on structured and one-to-one or small group
- No formal diagnosis or referral is needed to access our services
- All of our services are offered to families free of charge
Our transdisciplinary team includes a Session Lead, Conductor, Child and Family support staff, Speech and Language Therapist, Outreach and Portage Accredited professionals, Music Therapist and SEN Swimming instructors. Children also have access to assistive technology, such as a white board and ‘magic carpet.’ We have a dedicated sensory room with bubble tubes, fibre optics and soft furniture which parents are welcome to use.
Our story began in late 2000 with the announcement by the national charity, Scope, that it would no longer be able to fund its network of School for Parents. This was a facility providing early intervention services, centred on the principles of Conductive Education, to support parents in raising a pre-school aged child with cerebral palsy or other neurological condition.
Determined not to see the School for Parents close, Dame Vera together with her friends launched the ‘Bluebird Appeal’ and raised enough awareness and considerable funds to save the school. If it were not for her efforts, so many children would have lost out on an amazing start.
Dame Vera Lynn Children’s Charity continued to provide for the early intervention service in collaboration with Scope, until late 2016. The Charity then took a number of decisions to ensure a more sustainable future by ending the collaboration and delivering all of its own services.
From across the South East, we support more than 75 families per week, who have children with cerebral palsy and other motor learning impairments, here at our centre in Cuckfield or through our outreach work.