Six months of speech and language therapy will be delivered by Down Syndrome Liverpool with help from Redrow. The volunteer-run charity received £1,300 from the homebuilder’s Allerton Community Fund. The money will be used to cover the cost of a therapist at monthly speech and language sessions held at Wigwam on Rose Lane, Allerton.
The support follows an application from DSL trustee Ann Kenwright. Ann, whose son Jamie has DS and severe language delay, explained: “We pay our fabulous Speech and Language therapist, Carol Oakes, to work with our families and give children the additional speech and language support they need to help them develop to their full potential. Most of our children start talking much later than average and desperately need support. Several of the children involved, including some of the older ones, are still non-verbal.
“Currently 20 children aged from three to 14 are given monthly support, plus we provide strategies and resources for families to take away and practice with. This empowers parents to support their children on a daily basis and help them to develop to their full potential.”
Mum-of-five Ann says her son Jamie, aged nine, is now making great progress and his language is starting to emerge.
“Before Jamie was born we didn’t know he had DS, it was confirmed at two days old. At the same time we found out that he needed emergency bowel surgery that night and would later need open heart surgery at three-and-a-half months. The first few months were very tough and he was in and out of hospital a lot in his first 18 months,” Ann recalls.
“Since then, thank goodness, Jamie has gone from strength to strength and is now a very active and healthy little boy”
She added: “Jamie currently goes to a mainstream school and is supported by a fabulous one to one, who, amongst other things, is teaching him sign language to help him communicate. At home he loves to watch his favourite cartoons, copying the actions and ‘singing’ along to all the songs – he may not be able to say the words but he is certainly very vocal!”
DSL supports parents, carers and families who are affected by Down Syndrome and aims to enhance the lives of people with Down Syndrome living in Liverpool and the surrounding area. The charity was recognised in the Echo Awards 2018, winning the Charity Organisation Award. It is run by a small group of unpaid parent/carer trustees and relies completely on donations and fundraising to support it’s vital work. The trustees were overjoyed to hear that they’d been selected by Redrow for a donation.
Redrow’s donation to DSL was via a £10,000 community fund shared between local groups and good causes. The voluntary fund is in addition to Redrow’s statutory obligations linked to the 100-home Allerton Gardens development, off Woolton Road, in Allerton.
Elaine Mounsey, area sales manager for Redrow Homes (NW), said: “Through our Allerton Community Fund we’ve been able to discover lots of worthy causes in the local area. The speech and language therapy sessions hosted by Down Syndrome Liverpool was an obvious choice for us to support. It’s great to know that we’re able to help make a difference to children’s lives.”
For more information about Down Syndrome Liverpool, visit: https://downsyndromeliverpool.org.uk.
Homes at Allerton Gardens, on Allerton Road, are currently available “off plan”. For the latest availability and pricing, call 0151 391 3737 or visit www.redrow.co.uk/allerton.