VAST are looking to re-establish a Parent Carer Forum in Stoke-on-Trent.
Parent Carer Forums are part of the SEND code of practice 2015 which states “Parent Carer Forums are representative local groups of parents and carers of children and young people with disabilities who work alongside local authorities, education, health and other service providers to ensure the services they plan, commission, deliver and monitor meet the needs of children and families”.
‘Parents’ or ‘parent carers’ is an inclusive term which encompasses parents, grandparents, foster parents, adoptive parents or anyone with parental responsibility caring for a disabled child. ‘Disabled children’ is an inclusive term which encompasses children and young people with a disability, long term health condition and children with additional or special educational needs.
“Parent Carer Forums have been established in most local areas and local authorities are actively encouraged to work with them”. However, there has been no formal forum in Stoke on Trent for a number of years. Stoke on Trent City Council are keen to see a successful forum established locally and we shall be working with regional and national organisations Contact a Family and NNPCF (National Network of Parent Carer Forums) to help us achieve this.
We are looking to form a steering group with local organisations who understand the needs and can represent parents and carers. We would like to invite interested organisations to our initial steering group meeting in October 2019. Please get in touch with us if you would like to be involved.
If you are an organisation, a parent or carer who would like to become a member of the forum and be kept informed of news, events and ways to get involved please get in touch for more information.