Reach Out is a successful ongoing collaboration with Face it Resources, a local autism support network.
The Reach Out programme is an exciting and rewarding series of creative workshops, specifically designed for children and young people with additional needs (including autism, ADHD and asperger’s etc) and a HCC Gateway Card.
As with all our workshops, the Reach Out sessions are of the same high standard – we simply allow for additional support and resources during these activities so that participants can have the best possible time, in line with their requirements. Parents, carers and buddies are all welcome to attend if the child would like them to but unless they require 121 care they don’t have to… these workshops are designed to give the parent a short break,
The relaxed and friendly atmosphere of these sessions has proven hugely successful, with some young people having coming back time and time again over the course of three years!
One of our former participants and now Reach Out Volunteer Jack Halsall has made this brilliant short film which shares what you might expect from a typical Reach Out Session.
You can find out if we have any upcoming Reach out workshops booked in by clicking here.
Reach Out is kindly funded by Hampshire County Council’s Short Breaks grant scheme and has previously been funded by Children in Need. Annually Making Space applies for funding which finances a year worth of workshops at a time. Any upcoming workshops will be advertised under our what’s on section under courses.
What is the Gateway Card? The Gateway Card is free and will give you access to activities, play schemes and buddy schemes available through the short breaks programme. There are many benefits including access to a range of short break activities
Who is the Gateway Card for? The Gateway Card is for children and young people (aged 0-19) who have a disability and additional needs and may require support to participate in leisure and recreation activities. Gateway card holders must live in Hampshire and/or attend a school in Hampshire (excluding Portsmouth, Southampton and the Isle of Wight as they have similar schemes).
For more information on Gateway Cards and the online Gateway card application form, please visit this website.
Making Space Visual Story: We know that visiting a new place can be a bit nerve racking so to make you feel more comfortable about your visit to Making Space we commissioned a Visual Story. Made by local photographer Tom Langford and Reach out participant Jack Halsall we hope this helps you feel more comfortable about your visit.
Feedback: Here’s some of the feedback we have received over the last couple of years:
“I just wanted to say a massive thank you for all the support and kindness shown to my son whilst he has been exploring different expressive techniques on the Reach Out programme. This is a space where he feels comfortable and accepted. I do not have to struggle to get him out the door for this programme which can happen with most activities or days out. He knows that he can go at his own pace and that it is ok to have a go and be unique and creative. Through coming on this programme, it has enabled him to try new activities at school. He was able to get on a Controlling Worries Group during July & August and this combined with his confidence at Making Space activities has really helped his confidence and ability to sometimes include himself. He loves coming to Making Space. We did try another art programme last year but my son hid himself in a cupboard! He blossoms on the Reach Out programme and is able to be himself rather than a distressed person not able to communicate or be in the room with others. I was so proud to see his work on Wednesday and he was so proud to show me and take me through each item created. I just wanted to share what a massive impact the Reach Out programme has made on our lives.”
– Parent of a participant who attends our Reach Out workshops
“Working with Making Space and all the artists/staff over the last few years has been inspiring. As an organisation they are passionate about providing high quality workshops and events for all sectors of the community. I have been involved in working on a joint project, which aims to enable disabled young people to join in with specialised and standard workshops. Many of the young people we support have significant extra needs and behavioural difficulties and are unable to access many activities in their local communities due to their needs. It has been brilliant to see their enjoyment and self-esteem being raised by the exciting workshops and the parents’ pleasure in the activities their children participate in. Making Space seem quite unique in the variety of craft workshops and events they organise and this means the young people are excited to return many times”.
– Jo Halsall, Face It Resources. Jo works with Making Space on the Reach Out programme.
“As a parent of a child with Autism (and challenging behaviour) it is incredibly hard to find activities where I can take my son and know he will be accepted, included and valued. The importance of the activities and welcome offered by everyone at Making Space for both my family and many others is immense, providing a positive and safe environment and opportunities to create and explore”.
–Parent of participant who attends our Reach Out workshops.
“The workshops have given the boys opportunities to work on projects and in areas that they would not otherwise have been able to access and have really expanded their knowledge and enjoyment of the arts.”
– Parent of participants who attend our Reach Out workshops
“Inspiring, relaxed, open friendly staff with a wide skill set. We are able to do many different art techniques and styles. I really enjoy being able to make high quality art items with professional equipment and the opportunity to work with experienced artists. There is a supportive, small group atmosphere, which gives us the opportunity to work in a group/team as well as an individual. Such opportunities are hard to find. I create artwork that I am proud of.”
– Participant of Reach Out.
“These sessions make a huge difference to my child. It means they get out of the house, learn new skills, have fun and mix with people. It is very important to their welfare/ self esteem and confidence. These are the only sessions that my son will attend. He loves the fact they are not too noisy or busy.”
-Parent of Reach Out Participant.
“I have been running workshops as part of the Reach Out scheme for a while now and over the time I have been working with them you notice positive changes in the group. You tend to get a core of participants that return time and time again because it’s a group they feel safe in and that they have made friends in. The addition of new faces each workshop keeps the dynamic fresh and fun. We allow the group creative freedom, they can be themselves and it’s never an issue if someone has a melt down or needs a time out. I recently re-ran a workshop we had done over a year ago and the difference in the session was huge, they had confidence where before they had anger issues and frustrations. Those who had been before helped the new students and the session was so calm in comparison. These sessions are so worthwhile in giving children and young people who often feel left out a chance to belong to something which empowers them and makes them proud”
-Tutor on Reach Out Courses.
In response to the question ‘Is it important that Making Space continues to run activities exclusively for children with additional needs?’
“Yes, It is not just somewhere to go, it is providing real life experiences, skills and fun! Good value for money.”
“Yes, There are no other activities like this for SEN children in our area. Without it my son would not attend any short breaks events.”
“Yes, Smaller groups, which is better for noise. Acceptance, allowed to go out when needed to have a rest, lots of adult ratio which means more help when needed.”
“Yes, There are not many places for children with behaviour and extra needs that are welcoming and fun.”