Charity hosts free family fun day in Bury St Edmunds

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Disability charity ‘Contact a Family’ is celebrating the launch of its first East of England hub with a free family fun day in Bury St Edmunds.

The national charity, which supports families who have children aged up to 18 with any form of disability, has organised circus and drumming workshops, a reptile petting zoo, a sensory room and face painting as part of its fun day tomorrow.

And, while the children play, parents will have the opportunity to find out about the services offered by the charity which include information and support sessions, workshops and one-to-one family support.

Rachel Hill, Contact a Family’s regional development manager, said the charity was launching in Bury because parents in the area said there was a need for more support.

She added that the fun day would be followed up with three information sessions in the town between now and Christmas.

Of tomorrow’s event, she said: “As well being a great day out with the children, our family fun day is a chance for local families with disabled children to find out how we can help with issues like behaviour, sleep, siblings, coping and support, money matters and transition from child to adult services.”

Andy and Lynn Ellis from Battisford, near Stowmarket, will be taking their 15-year-old daughter, Lucy, who has down syndrome and autism.

The couple also foster children with ‘additional needs’ and will be taking their foster daughter and a friend’s boy who has health and mobility issues too.

Andy, 57, said Contact a Family’s events were a great opportunity to meet and share experiences with other families.

He said: “It’s very important because it gives you the opportunity to meet with other parents or carers and it gives the children the opportunity to meet and interact where they can.”

He added: “It’s networking and it breaks that feeling of isolation which an awful lot of people have if they have someone with additional needs in the family because it’s very time consuming.”

The fun day will take place at the Hyndman Centre in Hospital Road from 11am-4pm.

To register for a free slice of cake, call Rachel on 01473 614452.