Supporting Children With Additional Needs Through Play

Play is incredibly valuable for all children.

Play allows children to use their creativity while developing their imagination, dexterity and physical, cognitive and emotional strength.

Children’s needs vary and play activities can be adapted by those who know the child best to meet individual abilities, likes and dislikes.

Read PlayBoard NI’s publication, ‘Supporting children with additional needs through play’ at for some play ideas to try at home.

#Playday2022 #AllToPlayFor

Free School Meals – Summer Food Payment

Families who were in receipt of Free School Meals in the past school year (2021/22), are entitled to Summer Food Payment over the summer holidays. ☀️

The second payment will be made into bank accounts on Monday 8 August. If we do not hold bank account details for you, a cheque will be sent in the post on Monday 8 August. 📅

Please be advised that families receiving the Summer Food Payment still need to apply for Free School Meal and Uniform Allowance for school year beginning in September 2022.

SAIL (Social, And Independent Living) Programme – Applications Now Open!

Autonomie are currently recruiting young people for their SAIL program which will begin November 2022. This program will be based in the Belfast Area (location TBC). It will run for 6 months with days and times to be confirmed once the group has been identified (spaces are limited and expected to fill up fast).

SAIL program is for young people between the ages of 16-30 years with a physical and/or mild to moderate learning disability who have left school or who are preparing to leave school and do not intend to attend any full-time Education Colleges, Day Centres and/ or other training facilities.

This community-based programme helps young people build self-confidence and develop self-awareness and provides emotional and practical support during the transition between adolescence and adulthood.

SAIL offers participants an opportunity to develop or improve basic independent living skills and empowers these young people with additional needs to live more independent and confident lives within their chosen community

For further information please see leaflet below or contact Nicole Hammond (Youth Development Officer) either via email or via telephone 028 95918051.

Or, If you wish to make a referral, please complete the application form below and send it to

SAIL Information Leaflet

SAIL Recruitment Letter

SAIL Registration Form

Family Voice Hub Information Leaflet

Inspire – Advocacy for All Service

Inspires’s new ‘Advocacy for All’ service which has launched in the Western Health & Social Care Trust for people over 18 with mild/moderate mental health.

Advocacy for All will support people who are over 18 with mild/moderate mental health needs e.g. Low mood or motivation, anxiety, poor coping skills, loss of control, stress, isolation, who have no access to any other statutory commissioned advocacy support. Advocacy for All supports and empowers people to have their voice heard and resolve any issues they are having.

By creating an advocacy services for people at Steps 1 and 2, we broaden the scope of advocacy and peer support helping to develop resilience and self-help which is consistent with early intervention and prevention and reduces the need for more intensive mental health support.

Advocacy for All offers:

  • One to one support to resolve advocacy issues available to every person with mild to moderate mental health issues around Northern Ireland.
  • Information and signposting for family members and carers.
  • Access to i-connect, a unique digital wellbeing platform enabling participants to monitor and improve their mental health and wellbeing.

Referrals will be widely accepted, including from;

  • Individuals.
  • GPs and primary health and social care.
  • Local political representatives.
  • NIHE, Probation Board and other relevant statutory services.

How to get in touch;

  • A direct telephone referral line.
  • An online enquiry form.
  • Live web-chat service.
  • Post.
  • Advocacy drop in clinics.

Advocacy For All Information Leaflet

If you require any further information contact