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Feedback so far...
"The website is fantastic and the staff training resources are really useful." Laura Armitage, Tatton Park
"I have just watched your training course and found it incredibly helpful. There are lots of things that I can consider implementing for the SEND schools programme at Historic Royal Palaces which I have oversight of." Deborah Hogan, Historic Royal Palaces.
"The training is so rooted in personal experience, giving it real integrity and power to help shift mindsets and increase awareness." Hayley Youell, Culture, Health and Wellbeing Alliance
To work alongside service providers and organisations to make mainstream services more accessible for the 11 million people* in the UK who may find accessing mainstream services challenging, because of sensory overload, meltdowns and shutdowns.
So far, I have given advice to Lancashire Library Services ,The Science Museum, London, and have taken part in an Access survey and Forum at The British Museum.I offer an online training package, consultancy and more...
What are my qualifications?
I am a fully qualified teacher and librarian, and have 39 years' experience with sensory overload as I have an Autism Spectrum Condition. I am also an Autism parent, with an additional 9 years' experience specialising in sensory overload and meltdowns. I also have direct personal experience of Sensory Processing Disorder, ADHD, Anxiety and Post Traumatic Stress. I am a Dementia Friend, and I am a Fellow of the RSA (Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, UK).
"This sounds great, but we have funding cuts and severe financial restraints in our services right now"
Sensory Accessibility does not need to be costly. It could be as simple and inexpensive as having some ear defenders for hire. My online training package is free for all, so that finances need not be a barrier to Sensory Accessibility. If you request tailor made resource creation/training packages, please get in touch to check prices and availability. Cost is determined on an 'ability to pay' scale so that size of service does not affect ability to access this training.
What are Sensory processing challenges?
The central nervous system of some people over-registers sensory input (eg noises can be painful to ears, lights may be too bright, smells too strong etc). This creates overload and at times, pain, for the person and can make accessibility to mainstream services extremely difficult.
Who may be affected?
Sensory Processing Challenges are not unique to people with Autism. It is estimated that 11 million people* in the UK alone may find accessing cultural spaces challenging due to sensory overload. Sensory processing challenges also include people with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Dementia, Down Syndrome, Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Trauma, Epilepsy,and even people with no diagnosis…
Why are Sensory Processing challenges so important to be aware of?
When senses are overwhelmed, emotional regulation suffers dramatically and the person will become dysregulated. This can be seen as the fight, flight or freeze response. These are frequently referred to as either meltdowns or shutdowns and are debilitating and isolating. Sensory overload may also cause intense fear, anxiety, confusion, and in those with Epilepsy, stress from sensory overload may contribute to an Epileptic seizure.
Sensory Accessibility works to make mainstream services such as museums, libraries, cinemas, workplaces etc, more accessible whenever that service is open, every day, every hour. Here's what I offer, subject to availability:
1 Staff training - Free online training video available. If you are interested in tailor made training, get in touch to check prices and availability.
2 Consultations and follow up questions - on how your service could offer a Sensory Pack to hire, (eg with ear defenders), advice on quieter area provision...
3 High quality and accessible Visual Guides can be tailor made, so that they can be uploaded onto your site, to help address anxiety pre-visit.
Please note, if you would like me to visit your site and provide feedback, please get in touch. Please bear in mind that I am first and foremost a carer, and travelling to your site may not always be possible.
Tailored and affordable packages available-
Email me for more information:
Get in touch!There is some fantastic work going on in cultural centres to help people with Sensory Processing Challenges. I am making a visual resource detailing this amazing work, so people can download and share ideas and best practice. Send me info and photos about the amazing work you are doing:
*2019 estimates of people in the UK diagnosed with Autism, ADHD, Dementia, Down Syndrome, Epilepsy, Anxiety and PTSD. Google Search Engine