Tag Archives: disabled children

Games all children can play

Jackie Hagan works with disabled and non-disabled children at Scope’s inclusive nursery at Walton Children’s Centre in Liverpool. In our new video, Jackie shows how it’s easy to include all children in play with a little imagination:

View an audio description version of this film

All families are different but one thing they all have in common is that all children have the right to play.

Regardless of your child’s age or ability play is fun, relaxing and is something that you can do together.

We live in a material world, but play does not have to be expensive. Children love to play with household items which can then be put together to make a sensory box to help children explore different textures and sensations.

How many times do we see children playing with the box instead of the toy; so why not use this opportunity to paint the box together and make a den.

Communication is key to children’s development and supports their social skills. Puppets can be made from wooden spoons and surplus material, or recycle your plastic bottles and using dried pasta and colourful paper make musical shakers.

Get down to your child’s level, play and have fun!

For more tips, go to our Games All Children Can Play pages.

Please note: supervision is essential. Don’t let children play alone with homemade toys.

Kill Me Now

Kill Me Now at the Park Theatre, London, is a play about Jake who has sacrificed his career as a writer to care for his disabled teenage son Joey.  It deals with a range of themes, including assisted suicide.

Here, Naomi Collett, who has a disabled teenage son herself, gives us her thoughts on the play.

As the mother of a seventeen year old severely disabled young man, I was very interested to see the play Kill Me Now, but ten seconds in and my heart was rapidly sinking. The son, a pubescent youth, was writhing naked in the bath and shouting that one of his classmates was a whore. Yes, apparently where there is a disabled child, there will also be behavioural problems.

A few minutes later the primary carer, his father, played by Greg Wise, lugs his son from the bath to the bare floor to change his nappy. Hello? Hoists anyone? Hygiene?! The actors were barely warming up and I was already worried I was going to be stuck watching a series of cliches for the next two hours, starting with the biggest bogeymen for the non disabled world: bad behaviour and double incontinence. I started to wonder also what the response would be of those in the audience who were not carers.

Non-disabled actors Greg Wise and Oliver Gomm acting a scene from Kill Me NowBut then the play moves on to perfectly depict the mad fish bowl world of carers in crisis as the father and his sister struggle to cope with a second terrible diagnosis against a mundane backdrop of managing jobs and household tasks. The play shows the gallows humour, the kindnesses alternating with flashes of anger as the pressures on the father and sister pile up.

It also deals with issues that I’m sure every carer for a child on the severe end of the spectrum is far too aware of: the social isolation, the lack of services, and the ever present fear of ill health and death of the carer and the future. These questions are handled beautifully, although painfully. The father begs his ex lover to visit his son, the ex lover winces and makes excuses. When the father is given his own diagnosis, his first thought is of his son. And the scene where the father and sister, overwhelmed and exhausted tell each other: “I love you,” was so poignant it brought tears to my eyes.

Greg Wise and Charlotte Harwood acting a scene from Kill Me NowTowards the end I was wondering again about the response of non carers in the audience. The subject of voluntary euthanasia had been discussed; did they see the protagonists’ dilemma as being a result of a problem which only happens to other people and which ultimately could be resolved by euthanasia? Or were they aware that their lives were so difficult, less because of the nature of their conditions and more because of the lack of support from friends, their community, and society?

Maybe the play could be considered a call to arms or at least a thought-provoking glimpse into the world of disability and caring. As the play finished to an (almost) standing ovation, the two women to my left picked up their coats and got ready to leave. “That Greg Wise is looking gorgeous” said one. Sadly, the signs are not promising….

Assisted suicide is a contentious issue for many disabled people and their families. Read why Scope is against legalising assisted suicide and see another view from the parent of a disabled child.

If you would like to chat to other parents and carers about any of the issues raised in the play, visit Scope’s online community.

Five people share stories about extra costs – #100days100stories

For the past year, Scope has been campaigning to raise awareness of the extra costs disabled people face. These costs are different for everyone. So we’ve asked five disabled people and parents of disabled children to share their experiences.

The professional – Annabelle from Hampshire

Portrait of Annabelle smilingI have to buy shoes far more frequently than I would if I did not have cerebral palsy. My shoes wear out quickly because of the way I walk – the shoes I wear for work only last me two or three weeks. As a professional woman in my thirties, buying shoes should be a thrill for me. Instead it’s an expensive chore.

My job means I need to look smart, and this means that some things others see as treats are a necessity to me. For example, sometimes I struggle washing my own hair and need someone to help me, so I’ll have to go to the hairdresser. Someone who didn’t understand my situation might see me as indulgent. But really, I’m just putting myself on the same footing as everybody else.

The family – Liz, Dan and Ava from Essex

Liz, Dan and their two children

Our daughter, Ava, loves music therapy and it really helps her, but there is no provision where we live so we had to pay £40 a week to go private. When we buy specialist toys, we have to go to companies that charge four times as much.

Every time she needs a new wheelchair, we have to pay for the extras – a rain cover and sunshade can cost £500! We spend £50 a month on nappies. I have had to give up work to care for Ava, so Dan has to work seven days a week. He doesn’t get quality time with her any more.

The traveller – Sandy from ScotlandSandy smiling, on a boat

My husband and I took a cheap holiday advertised in a newspaper. We phoned the resort just to make sure there was a shower, because I can’t do baths. They said no, we would have to upgrade. The upgrade was an extra £80 or £90 – twice as much! We fought back and got a free upgrade, but a lot of people wouldn’t have the confidence.

On a ferry trip to France, we booked a disabled-friendly cabin. When we got there, we realised that if there was an emergency, I would need to navigate a flight of stairs to get to an emergency assembly point! We had to pay extra for a different cabin and it was less well-adapted – getting to the toilet was much more difficult.

The culture-lover – Hugh from Surrey

Hugh in a wheelchair using his feet to operate a computer

I’m into music, films, reading and studying – just normal life, really. I started my first degree when I was 51 and I now have a Masters in cult TV and film. To read a book, I need to have special software so I can read it on a computer screen, as I can’t turn pages and I have to pay someone to scan it in for me. The software itself is very expensive as well.

If I want to go to the cinema to see a film, I always have to buy two tickets – one for me and one for my carer. I’d love to do more socially, but I just don’t have the resources to do it.

The busy Londoner – Sulaiman from Redbridge

Sulamain in a wheelchair looking at the camera

I use a specialised 200kg power wheelchair and most underground stations in London aren’t accessible so I have to get a taxi. Going to a meeting or event in central London ends up costing me double or three times as much and taking up double the time.

I can go free on public transport with my Freedom Pass, but I have to pay for tickets for the two support workers I need with me. It’s at least an extra £100 to £200 each month.

It not only affects your social life and work prospects, it also has a huge psychological impact. I don’t want to sit at home watching Jeremy Kyle all day long. I want to go out, socialise, commute, go to work, pay taxes. I’m involved as a campaigner to ensure that everyone has this right in the near future.

Read the independent Extra Costs Commission’s new report on how to tackle extra costs.

We want to hear your stories about extra costs. Email stories@scope.org.uk.

How do you solve a problem like James? – #100days100stories

This is a guest blog from Holly Gaunt, 31, mum to James. He was diagnosed with autistic spectrum disorder at four-years-old. Now five, James attends a special school near their home in Portishead, Bristol.

In 2014, Holly began a blog about life as a parent of a child with autism. We’re sharing her story as part of our 100 days, 100 stories campaign

Since having children, I have become an expert in speed-shopping. In fact, unless I’m desperate, I try to avoid it altogether.

But today was an emergency: we had run out of milk and, more importantly, chocolate. I had no choice but to run the gauntlet, so to speak, keeping everything crossed that James would co-operate.

Unfortunately, about 10 feet Young boy sitting on a log on the grassinside Waitrose, James decided he’d had enough of holding my hand.

Before I could stop him, he had bolted around a corner and out of sight.

After trailing the aisles for several minutes in a panic, I eventually located him in the packed café.

I summoned my strength and managed to hoist him up over my shoulder whilst he screamed and smacked me in the face. For a four-year-old, he packs a surprisingly hard punch. I forced myself to grit my teeth and ignore his violent protest – experience having taught me that reacting would only egg him on.

At the checkout, I had to abandon my shopping several times to chase him as he tore off down the aisles, responding with a tight smile to the commentary of the checkout lady: “He’s a livewire, isn’t he?” I could feel about a hundred pairs of eyes on me and I knew exactly what they were all thinking.

And therein lies the ‘problem’ with James.  People don’t realise that he has autism, because he looks ‘normal’- so he is judged by normal standards. To other people, James is just naughty and needs a firm hand, which clearly I’m not giving him.

People with autism struggle to cope with sensory stimulation.Mum on the beach with baby and young son

For James, the supermarket isan overwhelming myriad of bright lights, colours, and noises forming a general din that makes him anxious and hyper. And because social norms mean very little to him, tearing through a crowded supermarket and throwing himself in the path of oncoming trolleys is not something he perceives as a problem.

James also lacks the necessary awareness of danger to prevent him from running off without a backward glance when something captures his interest. He isn’t being belligerent or ‘testing the boundaries’- that requires at least a very basic understanding of other people and their expectations.

Like our shopping trip, trips to playgroups, soft play centres, children’s parties, simple experiences that most parents take for granted are decidedly difficult for us. The common theme? Well, it’s other people. The staring. The whispered comments.  I could grow a thicker skin but that’s easier said than done.

The truth is that all of us, myself included, have at some point or another been guilty of judging a situation without knowing the facts. I hope that, by explaining autism from a parent’s perspective, I am helping to raise awareness of this misunderstood condition. Have you read this and learned something new? If you have, then I am one step closer to achieving that.

There’s lots of information on Scope’s website on autism and about being a parent of a disabled child.

Get involved in our 100 days, 100 stories campaign and read our stories so far.

My dream is to be accepted at school – #100days100stories

Guest post from Chloe, a secondary school student who has mild cerebral palsy which affects the left side of her body. She has shared her story as part of our 100 days, 100 stories campaign

When you are at school it can be hard to know what to say to people. People react to my medical list – which includes mild cerebral palsy – very differently, but this is what I want them all to know.

chloe
Chloe’s splint that helps her walk

The worst thing about having a disability is that people see it before they see you – before they get the chance to know you. I haven’t even opened my mouth yet and I know they have preconceived ideas about me. But that’s okay. I guess if you have something different from others then it is bound to happen. I mean, the stares, they are normal. It’s not every day you see a splint. That’s part of human nature, I can live with that.

It’s the glares of disbelief  that are upsetting. What you see is a tiny part of me. A tiny part of what makes me and my personality but also a tiny part of my medical list. Pain. Pain is invisible to the outside world, but perfectly visible to me on a daily basis.  I’m a part-time wheelchair user. A reluctant part-time wheelchair user at that. I may joke and say “Oh, it’s because I’m lazy” but that’s probably because it’s easier. It’s easier than saying you are in chronic pain, no one wants to hear that, people just want to know things are getting better.

Can I just say, I hate using my chair. It’s the last resort. For me it traps me and can leave me out of control, shows I have given up and can’t go on. If I am in my chair it doesn’t mean that I can no longer walk. It means the pain has become too much to manage – like someone screaming in your ears. Yet I’m still expected to concentrate in lessons and work. It means that fatigue is swallowing me up and not letting go.

Throughout high school my dream was to be accepted because I didn’t see the point in changing for anyone. I believe I am very close to it and for that I am eternally grateful. However another one of my dreams has been to dance in the school show – something I am yet to fulfill. You see, I used to dance, before the diagnosis list got out of hand. In my earlier years I was shy and reserved, something that doesn’t really fit my personality anymore. But now the barriers include my pain, fatigue and reduced mobility. I guess it’s something else I need to come to terms with.

I am constantly reminded about how positive and smiley I am. I’d agree, I am. Although a smile can hide anything you want. It can also make things easier to deal with. Being happy is a lot more fun in my opinion, it also makes others believe that things are all good.  I believe 100 percent that things could be worse. For me everything is normal. Normal is whatever you are used to. I also know it’s possible to live in pain and not just survive. It is possible to create the most amazing memories and achieve the highest possible.

Read more posts from Chloe on her blog.

Find out more about our campaign and read our 100 stories so far.

Fostering is one of the best decisions we ever made: #100days100stories

Isabel is a foster carer with Scope’s fostering service. She and her husband foster Rosie, aged 12, and Isabel has shared her story as part of Scope’s 100 Days, 100 Stories campaign. We have changed all the names here, as confidentiality is important in foster care.

I grew up with a friend whose mum fostered disabled children. I’d always thought I’d like to do it, but I thought I’d wait until my children were older.

But then one day at the bottom of my payslip was a message: ‘Interested in fostering?’ And for some reason, I couldn’t stop thinking about it.

We were in our mid-20s when we started fostering five years ago, younger than most foster carers, and our own children, Anna and Chloe, were still very small.

I’ve worked with adults with learning difficulties ever since I left college, and of course I’m a mum as well – so for me, fostering is both profession and family.

Meeting Rosie

Rosie came to stay with us five years ago, when she was six. She goes to a special school, and she has complex learning difficulties. When she arrived, I think she could say one word – ‘no’ – and that was it.

When you start fostering a child you’re shown reports from the professionals who work with them, and Rosie was described as ‘passive’ and ‘stuck in her own little world’. I was told: ‘She doesn’t really communicate, she just cries’.

Over the first few months she was with us, she just completely changed. Soon she was being described as full of life, confident, sociable.

Apparently a little boy at school asked the teacher, ‘Who’s the new girl?’ and it was, ‘That’s not a new girl, that’s Rosie!’

Rosie still has a birth family who loves her, but she didn’t feel safe with one of her siblings, who also has complex needs. When she came here, I think it just gave her the relief she needed to develop to her full potential.

Rosie today

Mostly she just likes bounding about the place! She loves books and photography, she loves playing in the garden, going on the trampoline. This morning we were playing together, feeding a soft toy monkey a yoghurt.

She gets on really well with my own children. They’re just like sisters now – so they get on each other’s nerves and argue a bit! But they care about each other, and they look after each other really nicely.

We’ve done a lot of work with Rosie to help her learn sign language. She still doesn’t have a lot of speech, but she’s very good at making herself understood now.

But I think the main thing we could do was just make her feel safe and secure, and make sure she feels loved and wanted.

It’s not like a conventional job at all. On a day-to-day basis, I just feel like Rosie is a member of my family – the only time it feels like a job is when you have to go to meetings and reviews and that sort of thing.

But when we’re out at the beach or going to school, it just feels like we’re a family.

Getting permanency

After Rosie had been with us for about 18 months, we went through the process that means Rosie can stay with us permanently, through to adulthood.

Scope is still there to support us and nothing has really changed – it just gives us stability and the comfort of knowing Rosie is here to stay. And for us, she’ll always be part of our family, even when she’s grown up.

Deciding to foster was one of the best decisions we ever made. We’ve got so much out of it as a family. There have been lots of high points, but just having Rosie in the family is a high point in itself.

40% of children waiting for a permanent home are disabled. Can you help us be there for them? Please donate to Scope’s Fostering appeal – you can help another disabled child find a safe and loving home where they can thrive.

We were offered a termination. No one ever said: “He’ll bring you joy every day” – #100days100stories

Guest post by Alexandra from Dunbar. Alex’s second child, one-year-old Benjamin, has very complex needs which were discovered before he was born. She writes a blog, and shares her story with us as part of Scope’s 100 Days, 100 Stories project.

We were 38 weeks into an uneventful pregnancy, excited about the prospect of meeting our second child.

Alex's son Benjamin at two days old
Benjamin at two days old

Then, at the end of a very long Friday, starting with a routine ultrasound at nine in the morning and ending with a hushed consultation eight hours later, we were informed that our baby’s brain had not developed beyond that of a 20-week foetus. It was way too small and simple. There were big holes in the middle and smooth surfaces where there should be intricate folds.

He may not breathe on his own, they said. He would probably need to be fed through a tube, would almost certainly suffer frequent and severe seizures, and would be very unlikely ever to walk or talk.

Benjamin in blue jumperWhile we weren’t pushed towards terminating the pregnancy, if we wanted to, the papers could be signed there and then.

We went home to think it over. We returned to the consultant again and again, we spoke to friends, relatives, counsellors, we scoured the internet.

A weekend turned into a week as we considered the implications for our baby – his likely suffering, his quality of life – for ourselves, and for our 21-month old daughter, Jackie.

I know it was the doctors’ responsibility to prepare us for the worst. But no one, no one, said: “There’s a chance he might be happy. There’s a chance you might still be able to do the things you wanted, just with a little more planning. There’s a chance he might enrich your lives in ways you never imagined.”

Our adorable son, Benjamin, is now one year old, and he has changed our lives for the better in so many ways.

Benjamin and his sister Jackie in Santa hats
Benjamin’s first Christmas with his sister Jackie

We haven’t yet missed out on anything we’d planned – we’ve been on trains, buses and family bike rides, bought a big old house on the coast, been abroad on holiday. My husband and I are closer than ever. I have learned that life is not so much about principles – it’s about caring.

We met some amazing people – mothers, fathers, grandparents, carers– fighting for their children, fighting to make their world a better place, sharing everything they have.

Benjy’s big sister loves him to bits, comforts him when he cries, plays with him whether he wants to or not! He’s the first thing she asks for when she wakes up in the morning.

Benjamin with his mum Alex
Benjamin today

Our son is a contented, even joyful, little boy and aside from his disabilities, he is healthy.

Yes, there are tough days. No one caring for any two children could truthfully say otherwise. Yes, we worry about the future – his and all of ours. Yes, it is early days yet – things may, and probably will, get harder.

But I firmly believe that Benjamin will continue to brighten our lives every day. He proves that there is another realm of possibility outside the grim, medical, worst case scenario.

Find out more about the 100 Days, 100 Stories project, and read the rest of the stories so far.

Colour blindness, on top of everything else! What next?

Guest post from Kathryn Albany-Ward, Founder, Colour Blind Awareness.

Just over five years ago we decided to move our then seven-year-old son to a new school where he would be able to play sport every day. He is a very sporty child and was looking forward to it but within a week he was no longer keen to go to school.

Nothing strange about that you say – plenty of children would get cold feet in a new school. But the unusual thing was his reason – he said he couldn’t see who was in his team for games. This was unexpected! Even more so because his kit included a reversible rugby top – olive green on one side and maroon on the other. In-depth quizzing revealed an astonishing fact – our son couldn’t see the difference between the two colours!

Here’s why.

rugby shirts
Normal colour vision

 

Rugby shirts seen with deuteranopia
Deuteranopia

I didn’t initially consider these colours to be red and green so colour blindness wasn’t on my radar. Only after other incidents dragged themselves up from the depths of my subconscious, such as the time he couldn’t tell the difference between lilac and sky blue fabric conditioner in the supermarket and the trip to the fruit farm where he picked only unripe strawberries, did I finally click that he might be colour blind. Wow, he managed to learn all his colours without us, his nursery school or four primary school teachers ever having a clue he couldn’t actually see them. How did he do that?

It turns out my son has a severe colour vision deficiency (CVD) and will never be able to see some colours. Here’s what he sees:

Pencils
Normal vision

 

Pencils seen with deuteranopia
Deuteranopia

Frustratingly his new school had no idea how to support him and I discovered that not only was there no meaningful information on the internet then, but also that colour blindness is not considered to be a Special Educational Need so there is no official guidance for teachers. Perplexingly, teachers are not trained in how to support colour blind pupils, even though 1 in 12 boys (and 1 in 200 girls) are affected – that’s one in every classroom! I found this shocking. Within a week I realised that my son was at a definite disadvantage, not just in the classroom but in everyday situations, so I set about raising awareness of colour blindness myself.

Having set up the Colour Blind Awareness website to help other parents and to provide information for schools, it took me another couple of years to realise the plight of children with CVD who also have other SENs to contend with.

I was suddenly struck by the idea of a bright non-verbal child, perhaps with severe cerebral palsy, trapped and unable to tell their carers that he can’t tell the difference between the red and green corners of his simple encoding board. I was horrified at that thought and immediately contacted Scope.  I am delighted to say that this guidance on CVD is now available on the Scope website.

Please contact Colour Blind Awareness if you have any queries and we will do our utmost to support you.

Disabled families hit hard by extra costs

Una Summerson, Head of Campaigns at Contact a Family, writes about why urgent action is needed from the Government and energy companies on extra costs for families with disabled children:

Contact a Family’s Counting the Costs campaign found a sharp rise in families with disabled children going without heating and food over the last 2 years. This is leading to ill health. With more than 3,500 responses from UK families with disabled children,

More than a quarter have extra costs of £300 or more every month relating to their child’s disability. The biggest costs being higher heating and utility bills.

Looking ahead, 60% of surveyed families see their financial situation worsening in the next year. Shaped by what thousands of families with disabled children say would help, the Counting the Costs campaign calls for urgent action by the UK government to stop this alarming trend. However, the campaign also recognises it’s not just about making sure the benefits and tax system adequately reflects the extra costs and barriers to work families face.

We are calling for energy companies take action to include all disabled children in their eligibility criteria for the Warm Home Discount Scheme. This scheme may lead to a rebate worth up to £140 on electricity bills. You can qualify if your energy provider is part of the scheme and:

  • you’re a pensioner who receives the guarantee credit of pension credit (the core group)
  • you fall into the ‘broader group’ of people that your energy supplier gives the discount to.

Each supplier has their own criteria for deciding who fits into the ‘broader group’. Some state that disabled children can be part of this ‘broader group’. Some don’t mention them at all, while others accept them if they also have a low income or child under 5. Confused, yes so are we!

Contact a Family’s helpline adviser Marian Gell says “It’s a minefield understanding the different eligible criteria for us let alone busy families. For example, British Gas use Universal Credit to determine eligibility. Since relatively few people are getting universal credit and it seems likely that many families will not be moved onto Universal Credit for several years. A family with a disabled child getting income support and child tax credit would not qualify according to these rules.”

The confusing and differing criteria, alongside the limited time families with disabled children means many often miss out on the scheme. We would therefore like to see a standard approach across all suppliers. Eligibility could be simply determined by receipt of child Disability Living Allowance. Ideally, we need disabled children not just to be recognised as part of the ‘broader group’ but to be part of the core group who receive the discount automatically and don’t have to apply.

Get involved with the campaign or find out about help with fuel bills on the Contact a Family website.

Raising awareness of disability-related bullying

This week is national Anti-Bullying Week, and this year’s theme is disability-related bullying.

Research by the Institute for Education shows that disabled children are twice as likely as other children to experience persistent bullying. This can take many forms including physical abuse, name-calling and cyberbullying.

We’ve teamed up with Ambitious about Autism and the Anti-Bullying Alliance to highlight some of the issues faced by disabled children and young people.

Jack sitting on the edge of a fighting ring
Seventeen year-old MMA fighter Jack

Jack’s story

Jack is doing an apprenticeship and is also possibly the only disabled mixed martial arts fighter in the UK – but part of the reason he took up the sport was as relief from the bullying he experienced at school.

“It started in year eight. Words like ‘spastic’ were thrown around at me and those words got me into trouble at school, because I wouldn’t stand for it.

“It was hard. I don’t want any kids, disabled or not, to go through it, because it was horrible.”

Boxing training helped put things into perspective.

“Over the course of a couple of months, I realised that I just needed to chill out. There are going to be people in the world that are just idiots, they have no idea what they’re on about, they throw the word [spastic] round like it’s funny, and it’s not.

“But then, I’ve got friends and family who support me 100 percent, so I just forget about it.”

Rebecca’s story

Rebecca, a youth ambassador for Ambitious about Autism, says she faced bullying from her first years at primary school.

“I remember people saying mean things to me, and I was always left out of friendship groups because I acted differently,” she says.

“I moved schools several times to try and get away from the hate I received, but it followed me everywhere I went. On the school bus I got hit, pushed and verbally abused so I ended up having to walk, and even then the bullies followed me.

“Other students called me weird, loner, freak, fat and ugly, which was one of the hardest things. People say words don’t hurt but they do, and they can have a long-lasting negative effect.”

What to do

The Anti-Bullying Alliance has put together a list of top tips for parents who find out their child is being bullied. Here are a few of them:

  • Don’t panic. Stay calm, try to listen, and reassure them that you are there to support them, and things will get better once action is taken.
  • Try to establish the facts. It can be helpful to keep a diary of events to share with your child’s school or college.
  • Stress that the bullying is not their fault, and that you will not take any action without discussing it with them first.
  • Don’t encourage retaliation to bullying, such as violence. It’s important to avoid hitting or punching an abusive peer.
  • Discuss the situation with your child’s teacher or Head teacher – or the lead adult wherever the bullying is taking place. Every child has a right to a safe environment in which to learn and play. Schools should have a behaviour policy which sets out the measures that will be taken to prevent all forms of bullying between pupils.

And what if you’re a young person experiencing bullying? Rebecca says: “The most important advice I’d give to other young people with autism who are being bullied is to not let people bring you down.

“Don’t let them hurt you. Speak up and ensure your teachers and parents actually deal with it. It can be hard to confide in someone, but when you do it can release a lot of weight that may be on your shoulders. Bullies are just jealous of how awesome we are!”

Scope’s Trendsetters group, where young disabled people come together to discuss issues that are important to them, have created some information and resources on how to deal with bullying.                      

You can also support the anti-bullying campaign on social media by using #StopBullying4all.