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Children and families with Down Syndrome will get help and support thanks to Durham Freemasons

Children and families with Down Syndrome will get help and support thanks to Durham Freemasons

More than 60 families with children who have Down Syndrome will receive support for both their medical condition and learning difficulties, thanks to a grant of £34,000 from Durham Freemasons to the Pioneering Care Partnership (PCP) charity.

PCP’s Together 21 (T21) project aims to support children with a range of medical conditions, some of which are serious. These include visual and hearing impairments, heart problems, low immunity, Leukemia, thyroid disorders and sleeping disorders. Most of the children have at least one of these medical conditions. The children will also face a range of learning difficulties associated with Down syndrome. The project delivers speech and language support including Makaton, literacy and numeracy, motor skills and life skills.

T21 provides an informal curriculum of developmental and social activities for the children and young people alongside their families, developed by their internationally recognised specialist education consultant. Each child is given an individual development plan, and the parents are supported to supplement the weekly sessions at their specialist facility with activities at home. During the school holidays PCP arrange various trips and activities.

Another key feature of Together 21 is the opportunity for the children to build friendships within peer groups. This is also a chance for parents to get to know each other, providing a vital friendship and peer support network for families.

T21 is unique, as it is the only programme in the North East of England dedicated to the education and development of children with Down syndrome. Families travel from all across the North East and North Yorkshire to benefit from Together 21, which is based and primarily delivered from the Pioneering Care Centre, Newton Aycliffe, County Durham.

The grant from Durham Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends, from across England and Wales.

To view PCP Website and video of our recent visit: Click here

Carol Gaskarth, Pioneering Care Partnership Chief Executive, said:

“We’re really grateful to Durham Freemasons for their generous grant which will support our essential work with children and young people with Down Syndrome. We’re there to help them improve their health, wellbeing and life chances.”

John Paul Thompson from Durham Freemasons, said:

“I’m very pleased we’ve been able to help the Pioneering Care Partnership with their hugely important work with families and children with Down Syndrome. As well as direct support for the children, parents have the chance to get to know each other and provide themselves with a vital support network.”

The attached photos show the Assistant Provincial Grand Master John Watts accompanied by Andrew Thompson and Paul Debenham, MCF representatives, who were invited to see the group in action. Many thanks to Carol Gaskarth, CEO for her assistance during the visit.


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