Author Archives: Emma Harper

SWM Street Collection Saturday 19 May 2018

Please support South Wilts Mencap on Saturday 19 May in Salisbury City Centre. We organise two street collections every year as they raise much needed funds to help continue our clubs, activities and services for people with learning disabilities.

This is an opportunity to be part of our team; by giving your time to our charity, you will help make a difference. Just one hour of your time on Saturday will contribute an enormous amount of support. We have lots of fun during the street collection as it is an opportunity to meet other supporters of South Wilts Mencap. Please email Nigel and let him know which times you can do on Saturday 19 May.

FamilyHub by Mencap

Mencap offer FamilyHub for you to join

Connect with others going through similar experiences to you.

Whether you are a sibling of someone with a learning disability, a parent who’s just had a diagnosis, or a parent of an adult with a learning disability with wisdom to share, you’ll find a warm welcome in the FamilyHub.


  • connect with others
  • share triumphs and challenges
  • a place for support and tips

Sign Up Here

Watch their video about FamilyHub

Building Bridges Programme

The Building Bridges programme supports people across Swindon and Wiltshire who are facing significant challenges in being able to develop their skills, access education or move towards the world of work. If you need help and support to find work or access skills training or education, you could really benefit from taking part in the programme.

If you are looking to get into work or education, the programme can help you to develop the skills and qualifications you need and address the practical issues such as transport costs, confidence and help with childcare.

Who can take part?

In order to take part in the Building Bridges programme you must be aged 15 or over, living in Wiltshire or Swindon and not currently working (unemployed). Please note the Building Bridges programme is not able to work with people on zero hours contracts.
You must have the legal right to work in the UK in order to take part. The programme can support registered refugees but is currently unable to work with asylum seekers. The Building Bridges programme is also unable to work with people who are currently in prison.

Visit their website for full details


Carer Cafe and info point at Salisbury District Hospital

Carers who have loved ones or friends in Salisbury District Hospital will have an opportunity to share their experiences over a cup of coffee and get advice and support

Location: Springs Restaurant, Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust, Salisbury District Hospital, Salisbury, SP2 8BJ
Time: 14:00 -16:00
Date : Every Thursday

*Please note – this is an independent café run by Salisbury District Hospital. A CSW information point and volunteer will be present on most occasions.

Big Pledge Challenge 2018 – Join the Ability Sports Team

In celebration of the home nations success at the Commonwealth Games the Big Pledge: Beat the Clock 8 week activity challenge is back!!

Rob Paget, Wiltshire Council’s Disability Sports Development Officer has created an “Ability Sports” Team.

All Rising stars, Fit club, Boccia, football, adapted cycling and any PE at school counts. In fact any physical activity counts towards the challenge including walking and housework! The team is not only for individuals with a disability – Rob will be inputting his totals and he hopes that parents/carers will also sign up too.

To sign up:

  • Follow the link below and hit the ‘Sign up’ button.
  • Enter your details then select ‘Big Pledge Beat the Clock Team Challenge
  • Tick ‘Join a Team’ and enter ‘Ability Sports’ for the team name
  • Then finish signing up as required!

For more details and to register for free go to:

Salisbury Parent Carer Support Group

Exeter House, St Mark’s Junior and Wyndham Park Infants’ Schools are running groups where any parents and carers can come along to chat with each other, to share information, for support, to hear guest speakers and to get help and advice with SEN issues.

The Hub, St Mark’s CE Junior school, Somerset Road, Salisbury SB1 3BL

All sessions run from 9.00am – 10.30am and refreshments will be available.

18 May
22 June
20 July 2018

Please contact George Cooper, Parent Support Advisor Exeter House for more details on 01722 334168 or email 

Petition in Response to Cuts to Universal Credit

Under Universal Credit, payments for a disabled child are to be cut by more than 50 per cent for most disabled children. Consequently, many families with a disabled child will be worse off.

Families whose caring responsibilities prevent them from working and who qualify for the lower disability element appear certain to be worse off by at least £1,600 per year. It seems certain that the number of families with disabled children who will be worse off is likely to be significantly more than 100,000. Many of these families are already struggling to afford basic essentials such as food and heating. The impact of a further cut of more than £1,600 a year for many is likely to be increased debt, stress and ill health. Contact is therefore calling on the Prime Minister to reverse cuts to child disability payments under Universal Credit.

More than 4,000 people have signed Contact’s (formerly Contact a Family) petition so far. This is an invitation to join them and help stop cuts to payments for disabled children under Universal Credit, by signing the petition today.

More information about Contact’s campaign against cuts to Universal Credit can be found HERE.

Creative Carers Support Group

Explore your creative side with this friendly carer group. No experience needed, just a desire to have fun!

They meet at SP2 Coffee & Community Centre, Fisherton Street, Salisbury from 11am to 2pm

Meeting dates/ themes:
14th May – Spring wreaths
11th June 2018
16th July 2018
13th August 2018
10th September 2018

Venue: SP2 Coffee & Community Centre, Fisherton Street, Salisbury, SP2 7QW
When: Monday 11am to 2pm. Bring your own lunch. Tea/coffee provided
See their facebook page for more details

Counting the Cost 2018 – Research into Family Finances and the Benefits System

Mums, dads and other family members who care for children and young people with additional needs or disabilities: this is a chance to take part in important research about family finances and changes to the benefits system.

Responses to Contact’s (formerly Contact a Family) Counting the Costs 2018 survey will give a unique snapshot of families’ current financial situation and whether it is getting better or worse.

By filling out the survey you will be helping to raise awareness which is particularly important as cuts to benefits continue to hit families with disabled children hard.

Please click HERE to go to the survey which will take approximately 15 to 20 minutes to complete.

The survey closes on May 18th 2018.