I have a relative with learning disabilities
Becoming a parent is a life changing experience; it brings a new dimension and a new purpose which requires a great deal of energy and strength. When a child with learning disability is born it brings all the emotions and responsibilities of becoming a parent but also a period of coming to terms with what has happened. There will be a great love for the new addition to the family but many parents have said that there may also be the need for a period of grieving for a child that has been ‘lost’.
For many parents there starts a lifelong process of coping with additional responsibilities that could not have been previously envisaged.
Finding the right support for a child with a learning disability throughout the early years, education years, teenage transition years, adulthood and into older age are all areas that most parents will have ongoing involvement.
Some parents have described their experience as being a constant battle for resources and professional expertise in order to ensure that their child has the very best support.
Having a child with a learning disability can bring great joy to any family but with it may come distinct pressures, particularly for other children.
Family members may also need support to cope with the additional responsibilities that emerge as the years pass by as disability will for most be life-long and therefore the support required for a person with learning disability will be 24/7 and 365 days every year.
Prospects main focus in the UK is mainly with people over the age of 18. However we do believe that the transition period from childhood to adulthood is often not given adequate time and attention. We do in some circumstances work with parents of younger people to plan for future support in adulthood if that is required and particularly if there is a desire to share future accommodation or day support with other people of a similar age.
Part of the Prospects vision is to support people with learning disabilities and their families in their Christian faith regardless of where they live. The Christian faith impacts upon every part of the Christian’s life; no less for a person with learning disability. A person may require a great deal of support in daily life and it follows that for those with a Christian faith they too will require the appropriate spiritual support in order to live the lifestyle of their choice.
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