This month's news kindly sponsored by: Brothers & Sisters who make inspirational clothing for children with additional needs. 

SNAP News:

July 2016

Welcome to SNAP News In July! 

We said a sad goodbye to Gillian this month as she left SNAP after two years as a specialist recruiter with SNAP.
We all will miss Gillian; she was very much part of the team – and she kept us entertained with her quick wit and quirky sense of humour!
Gillian helped a great number of candidates find the right jobs, which in turn of course enabled them to help a great number of children, families and clients. Her commitment and genuine concern for her clients was always clear for everyone to see.
We wish Gillian all the best in her future endeavorus, one of which we hope will be finishing her book! 

Brain Injury Group: 

Specialist training from brain injury experts – June 2016

Technically our first bit of news is news in June, but it was such a busy month we couldn’t fit this into the last newsletter and I really wanted to share some key points from 2 of the talks of the Brain Injury training session I was fortunate to attend on 21st June.
It was an excellent day, I met some great delegates and all the speakers were really interesting.  I would like to give a very brief overview of three of the talks plus share some links that I felt are relevant and very useful to parents, caregivers & associated professionals.

Dr. David Hynd, Head of Biomechanics & Injury Prevention Group

David’s discussion was around child seats, seatbelts and brain injury. He spoke in depth regarding regulations, the advances in child and adult restraint systems in modern cars, how they work and in what situations they don’t work, or don’t work as well as they could. The many videos of crash test dummies were a stark reminder of just how vulnerable the human body (and brain) can be in a crash, especially if restraint systems are not used or used incorrectly.
Some of the misuses of child restraint systems were fairly obvious: car seats the wrong size for the child or car, incorrect routing of the belt, incorrect harness height, twisted harnesses etc., but some factors that maybe less obvious such as wearing thick / winter clothing. If a child is in a car seat wearing thick coats / clothing, there will be a gap between the harness and the child’s body. The child’s coat may also be removed at some point and the straps not re-tightened, creating an even larger gap.

Good Egg Car Safety has lots of really useful information. 

Rosie Axon, Managing Director, Chiltern Music

Rosie gave a fascinating talk about Neurological Music Therapy – and even had us all clapping in rhythm – well trying to!
Music therapy can help individuals with a wide range of needs and not only in a psychologically / emotionally, but also in functional ways, to help speech and communication, cognition and motor skills.
Rosie played some excellent clips that you can see on Youtube below, that really show just how effective music therapy can be. I have to admit my knowledge of music therapy was very limited; I had no idea just how effective it can be for physiological difficulties such as improving gait. 
Rosie has kindly supplied an article (please see below) and for more information take a look at their Facebook Page and Website.

(They will also be exhibiting at the OZC CONFERENCE 2016 - Innovations in Clinical Practice - as will SNAP!)
Sally Britton, SNAP 
Gabrielle Gifford

Gabrielle Gifford

This video is about Gabrielle Gifford's Music Therapy process which helped her rewire her brain, and gain back her speech.

Chiltern Music

Recent advances in neuro-imaging have demonstrated the huge benefits to the brain of music and auditory stimuli and reinforce the strong evidence-base for using music to improve patient outcomes, assist with rehabilitation, and help patients adapt during illness and injury.

The brain’s natural ability to recognise rhythm and process music means it can be used to improve speech and communication, cognition and learning skills, and motor skills or physical disabilities.

Chiltern is an award-winning neuro and medical music therapy service providing individual assessment and treatment programmes to children and adults alike, particularly those with complex needs. Understanding that every child has different requirements and capabilities, our team of highly qualified therapists focus on improving physiological and psychological responses and changes in our clients through music and auditory stimulation.

Chiltern’s specialist Brain Injury and Neuro-Disability practice supports patients with acquired, hypoxic or traumatic brain injuries, those with Cerebral Palsy, and sufferers of injuries at birth and life-limiting conditions, to name a few. By tailoring programmes and using a variety of music therapy techniques, we help our patients to develop restorative, compensatory and psycho-social-emotional approaches to combat individual areas of difficulties.

George is one of our clients. Now aged nine, he was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy following complications at birth, is unable to speak and has poor mobility in his upper body. His parents did notice, however, that he responded well to music and enjoyed singing. Within his neurologic music therapy sessions, George has been introduced to many different instruments, songs and musical styles, and after a year of therapy, he has gradually developed the use of his hands, by playing the keyboard and guitar, with support from a therapist. This improvement in flexibility and coordination has meant that he is now well on his way to being able to hold adapted cutlery to feed himself at mealtimes with the rest of the family.

In line with other speech, language and physio aims, George also takes part in various musical activities, songs and games which help develop the use of his arms, legs, voice and brain functions such as attention and memory. Specifically, George has gradually been able to communicate using his eye gaze, choosing instruments, songs and even developing this to writing songs with the therapist! With support from his siblings and parents, George also enjoys interacting with musical instruments and songs at home, and by using a Neurologic Music Therapy Home Programme, those around George have been equipped and empowered to continue elements of music with him.

The Chiltern music therapy service is available to all and we are the first non-profit organisation in the UK to offer specialist Neurologic Music Therapy assessments. We often work closely with the NHS, Local Authorities and interdisciplinary teams to ensure our clients receive a joined-up approach that is right for their needs. Anyone can make a referral for a music therapy assessment; contact us by email or on: 01442 780541. Or for more information, visit our website

Rosie Axon, Chiltern Music Therapy
Neurologic Music Therapy - Rhythmic Auditory Stimulation - Gait Training

Rhythmic Auditory Stimulation
Neurological Music Training helping with gait training, following a stroke, with great results.

The Children's Trust

Professional Showcase Morning, July 15

I have been fortunate to have had the opportunity to visit the Children’s Trust on several occasions and looked forward to another visit for their Professional Showcase Morning, that would highlight the great work they do and in particular their rehabilitation programme.
As soon as you get to the Children’s Trust, the beautiful location, buildings and facilities impress you; the setting is really quite special. The next thing that you notice is how friendly everyone is, whether it’s a therapist, gardener, porter, teacher, everyone makes you feel extremely welcome.
The morning was opened by Maggie Clancy, director of clinical services with their inspirational video Days of Wonder that completely sets the upbeat, positive and warm tone that spreads throughout the Children’s Trust. We then heard a little of the history of the Children’s Trust and the services they offer.
The Children’s Trust support with children with an Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) in several ways; they have a residential school, offer respite and short stays including a summer camp, Saturday Club, community services and a brain injury rehabilitation services, which was the focus of the day.
The Children’s Trust brain injury rehabilitation service is the step down from hospital to home. They have a very specific process to ensure the child is able to return home as soon as possible. The average time spent in rehabilitation used to be 6 months, but they have managed to reduce this to an average of 4 months.
To be able to do this takes a large team of dedicated professionals who all work together to achieve the goals for the individual child and their family. The benefit of having all these professionals in one place cannot be underestimated. The service takes into account the wider needs of the family both to equip them on a practical basis, but also psychology to help them come to terms with a dramatic and traumatic life change.
The Children’s Trust can accommodate children who are technology dependent as long as they are stable; a doctor is present on site during normal working hours.
A highlight of the morning was a passionate (and entertaining) talk from a father whose daughter has an ABI. We heard a very personal story of their journey and the amazing support and care the Children’s Trust has given them as a family. 
The morning was rounded off with a guided tour which is always impressive; the facilities are quite exceptional, and all in beautiful grounds. I knew what to expect when I visited the Children’s Trust again and I wasn’t disappointed, it reinforced the memory that this is a very special place indeed.
The Children's Trust: Wonder

The Children's Trust present their new film, Wonder!

This film showcases the wonderful environment and amazing work that takes place at The Children's Trust, the UK's leading charity for children with brain injury. 

Changing Places 10-year anniversary celebration at Barbican Cinema, 19 July

In 2006, the campaign began to raise awareness of the importance of decent changing places / toilets that are truly accessible. At the time, the campaign was met with fairly lacklustre responses, was anyone really going to get passionate about such a topic? Toilets are not exactly the most glamorous of subjects. They were told that if they managed to get 20 toilets built to their specifications, it would be seen as a success…
So 10 years later, the Changing Places Campaign has gone from strength to strength. People did understand what an important issue this is and were keen to join the campaign and spread the word. Businesses realised not only did they have a moral obligation if they were in a financial position to install a Changing Places toilet, it made great business sense too. 

Some great images of the day - look closely and you can see me with the charming Lloyd Page from Mencap (middle, bottom row)! 

A Changing Places toilet is truly accessible where a standard disabled toilet is often not. Campaigners around the UK report back with photos of so-called accessible disabled toilets, that are minuscule, dirty, no suitable changing mat so they have to use the floor, are used as storage for cleaning equipment or surplus furniture… the list goes on.
I was fortunate enough to spend the morning at the Barbican, where celebrations started with Mike (Mencap / Changing Places Consortium) and Raymond (British Toilet Association) starting their 'Toilet Dash'!

The 19th July this year happened to be the hottest day of the year, just as it was on the day the campaign was launched 10 years ago.  A coincidence that was not so welcomed by Mike and Raymond who ran from the Barbican Centre to Westminster, via 4 Changing Places toilets! 

Aveso set out the criteria required to be awarded a Changing Places seal of approval, and yes it is expensive and yes many small businesses and organisations won’t have either the space or finances to provide such facilities, but many will – and many do, to date there are over 800 Changing Room Facilities across the UK and the number keeps growing.
It was a fantastic morning, meeting some amazing people who have a shared passion and commitment to keep this campaign moving forward. The importance of providing suitable facilities makes such a huge practical difference to enable everyone to access all areas of the community, as well as an emotional one; if you are effectively assigned a dirty broom cupboard, it’s not going to make anyone feel like a valued member of society. Great work Changing Places! 
Sally Britton, SNAP



We are often asked about insurance for nannies and so our friends at Nannytax provided some information about their services.

At Nannytax, the UK’s leading payroll specialist for nanny employers, we are keenly aware of the unique relationship that exists between families and their nannies.

Our aim is to provide the necessary support to both parties to help achieve a strong and lasting working bond. Public Liability Insurance for the nanny is important for maintaining trust and will give nannies, as well as their employers, peace of mind that protection is place should a claim become necessary.

Our specialist Nannyinsure policy has been created with the professional nanny in mind and works to give the reassurance needed.

What is Nannyinsure?

Nannyinsure is a Public Liability Insurance policy that provides specialist cover for nannies while they are carrying out their professional duties.

Our policy gives peace of mind that protection is in force against certain claims arising from the children being in the nanny’s sole care, as well as fulfilling part of the mandatory criteria for Ofsted Registration.

What we provide

• A standard limit of indemnity of £5 million
• Personal Accident cover for up to £50,000
• Cover for up to 6 children in the nanny’s sole care
• Cover whilst travelling outside the UK for up to 90 days in a single trip*
• Administration of drugs and medicines*
• Cover whilst a child is left with another approved adult for a temporary period*

* Conditions apply. Please refer to the Policy Document for details.

An annual policy costs £70 (including Insurance Premium Tax).

How to Apply
Application can be done entirely online where it’s quick, easy and completely secure. Visit for more details and the application form.

Policy Requirements
Applicants to Nannyinsure must be at least 18 years of age, have no more that 6 children in their sole care at one time and must have or be in the process of obtaining an up-to-date DBS check.

Visit our website for a full list of the policy requirements.


Some of our favourite YouTube Clips

Tell Us About Your Favourite Clips!

AnnaKennedyOnline Flashmob!

Watch the amazing Anna Kennedy and her Flashmob dance to raise awareness of autism - filmed by Sally from SNAP.
We're The Superhumans | Rio Paralympics 2016 Trailer

We're The Superhumans | Rio Paralympics 2016 Trailer

Channel 4 is proud to present the 3-minute trailer for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.  The Games start on 7th September.

#SNAP Hot Topics This Month!

What was it like starring in Channel 4’s
Superhumans advert?

Guy Llewellyn, a horn player and Virgin Media employee, starred in the ad as part of the big band. Here, he tells Scope the impact music has had on his life and the best bits of taking part in the filming. #YesICan

Have something to share?

If you have a favourite video clip, app, website or book, why not send us the details so we can share with everyone through SNAP!News. We would also love to hear about new technology and equipment, activities and resources that you particularly like. 

Send your nuggets to or call Jackie on 020 7729 2200 

SNAP Childcare / SNAP16+ - the specialist recruitment agency placing high calibre professionals to support babies, children, teenagers, young adults and adults with additional needs since 2001.

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