Services for children and young people

Supporting deafblind children, young people and their families is an important part of the work of Sense. 

A boy making a toyWe know that being told that your child has, or could have, problems with their sight and hearing can be a daunting experience - but Sense is here to help.

Our experience of supporting deafblind children, young people and their families has been developed over many years. This means we have wide experience of the impact of deafblindness and multi-sensory impairment. 

This places us in a unique position where we can work with you and the other professionals involved with your child to develop the most appropriate strategies and interventions to support them.

Our approach to working with deafblind children and young people is to put them first, identifying their strengths and how those can be built on. We want to find out what children can do, not to dwell on what they can’t.

Watch our subtitled film showcasing the services we provide for children and families.

Our specialist teams

"Our first experience of her just being a child first, was meeting the Sense teacher."

Flo, parent

Many professionals supporting families will not have come across deafblindness or multi-sensory impairment before as they are relatively rare conditions. 

Our teams work with professionals to help them better understand the nature of multi-sensory impairment, so they are better able to support families.  

There are a range of services that support young people and their families. The Children's Specialist Services team are a group of specialists who offer advice and support to families along with a range of family events and groups  which we run in various places across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

We also have information on a wide range of subjects relating to children, young people and deafblindness, including practical ideas on topics like sleeping, eating and playing, plus information on education and communication.

Other Sense services that could help you

Branches

Branches are groups of people who are interested in deafblindness and other associated disabilities who come together to offer each other mutual support. They campaign for services and the needs of deafblind people, share information, experiences and ideas, and socialise together.

Intervenors

An intervenor provides one-to-one support to congenitally deafblind children or adults - enabling the individual's social and personal development, encouraging their independence and facilitating their communication with the world around them. Intervenor support can be provided in the person's home, in their local community, in an educational or vocational setting, or across several settings. Intervenor schemes are usually funded by direct payments, individual budgets, social services, local health or education authorities.

Holidays

Each year Sense organises around 25 summer holidays for over 120 deafblind children and adults. From canoeing to climbing – each holiday gives deafblind people the chance to have fun and try new experiences.

Short breaks

Our Short breaks offer children and young people up to the age of 19 years and their families fun and interesting ‘getaway’ opportunities throughout the year in Cornwall and Cambridgeshire.

Support into adulthood

As children get older, Sense helps them - and their familiies - to make plans and practical arrangements for their future adult life.

Sense also provides a range of housing and educational support to deafblind adults.  We are committed to creating accommodation choices in the community that offer people the support they need to live as independently as possible and in the way that they choose.

How to contact us

To find out more please contact Sense's Information and Advice service who will ensure you are put in touch with the right team.

Email: info@sense.org.uk
Tel: 0300 330 9256 or 020 7520 0972
Textphone: 0300 330 9256 or 020 7520 0972
Fax: 0300 330 9251

Related links

Sparkles appeal - help us create the first dedicated centre for deafblind children in North London

Training and consultancy

Intervenors in Action DVD

Young Sense network

Siblings Network

First published: Wednesday 30 May 2012
Updated: Wednesday 5 November 2014