Newsletter from SNAP Childcare / SNAP16+
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SNAP News:

In November 2015

Welcome to SNAP News - a round up of news in November. 

This months news kindly sponsored by: Nannytax who we have known since SNAP first started back in 2001!

Kith & Kids


Spend 5 days gaining experience with children and adults with a learning disability and/or Autism.

Kith and Kids are looking for energetic and enthusiastic volunteers, to join us on our fantastic fun filled Xmas Social development Project. The project runs from Sunday 27th – Thursday 31st December, 9:30am - 5:30pm in North London.
Kith & Kids’ aim is to empower families who have a son or daughter with a learning disability or autism (many also have a physical or sensory disability) to overcome their social exclusion. Throughout the year we provide a variety of volunteer-supported projects and services, offering opportunities to learn new skills, make friends, go out and have fun.
Kith & Kids also offers quality training to hundreds of volunteers throughout the year who support our projects and provide a vital link between our participants and the wider community.
On the project you will be directly be involved with our members with a learning disability and/or autism. The aim is to encourage and support the member who has a disability, in talking part in a wide range of activities such as our arts and crafts, video, massage, music and many more. Workshops are run by trained creative therapists and experienced activity leaders

Not only is it a week full of fun and games, for you and our members, you are a vital part in supporting them to develop independence and their social skills in a day to day environment.
Each fortnight (in term times) we also hold a Saturday or Sunday activity for people with learning disabilities or autism and volunteers.
Weekend clubs are like mini versions of our Social Development Projects.  
If you would like to get involved, please do get in contact with us by Friday 11th December, by phone on 0208 801 7432 or by email
Check out our website

The Portland Hospital Paediatric Rehabilitation

The Portland Hospital offers rehabilitation programmes to help every child achieve their full potential and lead a full and happy life.

Our dedicated Acute Neurological Rehabilitation Unit – the only such unit in the UK with an onsite paediatric intensive care and diagnostic technology – treats children of all ages, from babies up to the age of 18, on an inpatient and outpatient basis.

Rehabilitation programmes are tailored to the individual child’s needs, and cover a wide range of neurological conditions and complex disabilities including traumatic brain injury, cerebral palsy, developmental delay and rehabilitation following complex surgery.

Why Choose The Portland Hospital Rehabilitation Unit?

The Rehabilitation Unit is situated within The Portland Hospital, giving onsite access to a range of acute children’s services including  specialist consultants, the latest diagnostic technology, a 10-bed Paediatric Intensive Care Unit and medical and surgical treatments.

It means rehabilitation programmes can be started early on – sometimes whilst a child is still on the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit.

Our world-class specialist consultants work alongside a skilled and experienced multi-disciplinary team of nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, neuropsychologists, play therapists, tutors and dietitians to provide a co-ordinated and holistic programme of care.

Once children reach the age of 18, we ensure a smooth transition into the Acute Neurological Rehabilitation Unit at The Wellington Hospital so that you child can continue their rehabilitation programme in an environment designed to treat older patients.

Family-Centred Care 

Our philosophy is to involve you and your child in every aspect of rehabilitation, from planning the programme and setting goals, to joining in with nursing and therapy sessions. Regular meetings are set up between staff and family members to provide support and review progress.

Parents are welcome to stay with their child overnight and all our rooms are designed to allow this.

Treatment Programmes and Goals

Your child’s programme will be overseen by their admitting consultant, and their treatment will be closely managed by our specialist consultants and appropriate members of our rehabilitation team.

We offer specialist treatment programmes in four areas: Acquired Brain Injury, Cerebral Palsy, Neurodevelopmental Disorder and Global Development Delay and Surgical Rehabilitation.

Each treatment programme is tailored to the needs and age of your child, and will consist of a variety of high-quality therapies and educational support to allow your child to achieve their physical, functional, social and educational potential.

All programmes aim to engage and challenge your child, and maximise recovery through one-to-one and group sessions throughout the day.


Being located within The Portland Hospital gives access to a large number of experienced specialists and diagnostics equipment to support the programme. In addition we have:

• Sensory motor gym – a safe and exciting environment to promote your child’s interaction with their surroundings and challenge their sensory and motor skills..
• Sensory room – to enhance children’s senses, helping them to focus or relax, and to ease anxiety before an operation.
• Playroom - dedicated play therapists offer a variety of activities during your child’s stay.
• Hydrotherapy – an off-site hydrotherapy pool complements our therapy programmes.
• Individual treatment areas – for one-to-one sessions.
• Gym facilities – for older children and group work.

Equipment and Specialist Input

Our therapists offer a range of specialist treatments including: respiratory and airway management, provision of orthotics, splints and lycra suits, posture and seating assessments, speech and language therapy, and nutrition and feeding assessment and management.

For further information or enquiries please call the Children’s Therapy and Rehabilitation department on 020 7390 6553

Rocket Shoe Laces - Road Testers Required!

Is your child struggling to learn to tie his / her shoe laces?  Perhaps they have difficulties with their fine motor skills?

We saw Rocket Laces on the web and thought they looked great, but we would like some authentic feedback! The laces hold their shape and are non-floppy so should be easy to tie.

We have 2 sets (Pink & Blue) to give to 2 SNAP News readers to test and give us their feedback.

If you would like to give them a try and provide feedback for our next newsletter, please send your contact details to – we only have 2 sets, so it will be the first 2 people to reply!

Janet and Jade from SNAP Attend Living With a Brain Injury: Learning From The Patient Workshop

A big thank you to Professor Barbara Wilson and Dr Anita Rose for presenting a unique one day workshop aimed at highlighting difficulties following brain injury and learning from “survivors” and their families.

We had the privilege of hearing the stories from the real experts: people who have survived in a disordered state of consciousness through to those individuals living in a community setting following rehabilitation. Each case study focused on assessment, interventions and the subsequent lives led by affected subjects.

The workshop was held at the Raphael Medical Centre based in stunning grounds in the Kent area, specialising in neuro-rehabilitation for adults.  

Jade and I came away feeling enlightened and inspired.  We cried a wee bit and laughed a lot!

We were lucky enough to be given a signed copy of ‘Brain on Fire’ at the workshop, what a fantastic read!  We highly recommend this award winning memoir and instant New York Times bestseller that goes far beyond its riveting medical mystery.  Brain on Fire is the powerful account of one woman’s struggle to recapture her identity.

Other books worth reading:

Surviving Brain Damage after Assault’ - At the age of twenty eight Gary was assaulted by a gang with baseball bats and a hammer, resulting in several skull fractures and severe brain damage. For nineteen months he had little awareness of his surroundings before he started to show some recovery. This inspirational book documents his exceptional journey…

Identity Unknown’ – How acute brain disease can destroy knowledge of oneself…

Life after Brain Injury: Survivors’ Stories…Unique and fascinating book which portrays rehabilitation at its best. Each chapter describes the process of rehabilitation assessment and treatment from the perspectives of both participant and therapist. This book is an account of twenty people who have survived an insult to the brain through Traumatic Brain Injury, encephalitis, stroke or hypoxic brain damage.  

Janet MacLennan, Recruiter SNAP Childcare / SNAP16+

Ruth's Review of The Cookbook for Children with Special Needs

We really enjoyed looking through this book when it arrived in our office.  It is a great introduction to cooking with some creative recipes.

The step-by-step instructions and pictures make recipes very easy to follow and encourage children to cook from scratch, learning valuable new skills.

I was particularly impressed with the bright, colourful photographs, making this a very appealing book for all children and would make an ideal Christmas gift!

Ruth Lillis, Senior Administrator SNAP Childcare / SNAP16+


Sally from SNAP Attends the Together Conference 2015

The annual conference of CMSUK (Case Management Society UK), is always a highlight in the SNAP calendar!  For the first time this year CMSUK teamed up with BABICM & VRA to organise a joint ‘Together 2015’ conference which was especially interesting and enjoyable.

Unfortunately I was only able to attend the first day, but there were some excellent speakers opening with great presentations from Professor John D Banja, the keynote speaker (Ethical, Psychological and Professional Challenges of Collaboration and Working) and Dr Edgar Meyer (Launch of the Case Management Framework).

The morning and afternoon talks were then divided into three separate streams; it’s always difficult to choose which to attend as they all sound interesting in their own way.

I chose Helen Gill-Thwaites MBE, from Gill Thwaites & Elliott Consultants Ltd, Assessing PDOC: Detective work at its Best. Collecting the evidence of consciousness level & using the guidelines for prolonged disorders of consciousness. Following on appropriately was a talk from Rob Gregory from Tobii Dynovox who discussed the scope and application for Eye-Gaze technology. Related subjects and very interesting and thought-provoking.

After lunch I took the opportunity to take a look at the exhibitor’s stands. It’s always interesting to see what new companies are offering client’s with disabilities and catch up with some familiar faces – such as lovely Jan Harrison from Harrison Associates who we know well!

The last streamed talk was from Anita Pascoe from West Country Case Management, who discussed the practical solutions to support people with an ABI to make decisions and stay safe – a sometimes precarious balance between enabling independence and ensuring safety.  

It was an informative and enjoyable conference with many thought provoking talks and it worked very well with the three organisations joining together. We look forward to next year! 

Sally Britton, MD, SNAP Childcare / SNAP16+

Some of our favourite YouTube Clips

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Tell Us About Your Favourite Clips!
Kith & Kids Information Film

Kith & Kids Information Film

This short film shows how Kith & Kids works with families who have children with learning disabilities and/or Autism

Steve's Story

Hear what Steve, with ALS/MND, says about the speech generating device Tobii Dynavox I-15+. He uses it to remain in work, communicate with his wife and friends, and play with his two sons Charlie and Maxwell. He even uses the I-15+ to run his own micro brewery.
Tobii Dynavox - A New Voice in Patient-Centered Care

Jo's Story

In this video, watch how Jo, a Tobii Dynavox user, used her device while in the hospital and learn how the implementation of the Healthcare Integration Program at your facility can help others in similar situations, as well as the healthcare professionals!

Singing Hands: We Wish You a Merry Christmas - with Makaton

The SNAP Team are busy learning these signs to wish all our subscribers a Merry Christmas.  See how we get on in our next Newsletter!

#SNAP Hot Topics This Month!

New BBC Drama With Autism at its Heart

Filming has started on a new six-part BBC drama featuring a family whose youngest son is diagnosed with autism

The A Word, which focuses on the efforts of Scott family to adjust to the diagnosis, is described as ‘a funny and thought-provoking series about parenthood and childhood and what it is like to have a child who fails to fit the mould’.

The UK drama has been adapted by award-winning screenwriter Peter Bowker from an Israeli series made in 2010.

Bowker said:

‘I loved the original series and wanted to honour its spirit while writing something new. We have the opportunity here to make something funny, tough, realistic and inventive about contemporary family life and autism. In a society where imperfection increasingly comes with blame attached it seems timely to look at how autism is regarded both within a family and the wider community – and to give some insight into how that experience might be for the child on the autistic spectrum. It’s a drama full of ideas – about parenthood, about disability, about communication, about community – and will emphatically engage an audience whatever their experience of the subject’.

The cast includes Christopher Eccleston, Lee Ingleby, Morven Christie, Greg McHugh, Vinette Robinson and has newcomer Max Vento palying the part of the autistic son.

Eccleston said:

‘I’m very proud to be reunited with writer Peter Bowker on The A Word. This is a special job for us all. We hope the audience take us to their hearts’.

The series is expected to start screening on BBC1 in late spring 2016.

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.

Copyright 2015. SNAP Childcare Limited All rights reserved. Company No: 4140483

Our mailing address is:
SNAP Childcare / SNAP16+, 91-93 Great Eastern Street. London EC2A 3HZ

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