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Hawthorn Family Support

Hawthorn Family Support

Essential support and information for parents and carers of children aged 0-3 with additional needs.

Hawthorn is the only centre of its kind in Leeds and we provide support to families who have a very young child with additional needs. 

Hawthorn welcomes families to attend for one day per week. Up to nine families attend a group on a Monday, Tuesday or Friday. There is a lovely, bright, well-staffed playroom where children can play, containing soft toys, books, and a ball pool, amongst other things. We also have a sensory room, as well as an area and apparatus for outside play. Lunch for the children is freshly cooked and served around midday in our children’s dining room, and a drink and snack is offered in the morning.

A separate parents’ room affords family members the chance to relax and socialise, and to enjoy food and a drink (lunch time meals are available for family members too).  A family support worker is on hand to help families with information, advice and support.

Information about the group


The centre runs every Monday, Tuesday and Friday.

“You have managed to get my children to eat when I couldn’t, get them to drink milk when they wouldn’t and be cheerful when I thought they’d forgotten how. You have [also] offered me a place to cry without people thinking I’m having a breakdown, laugh at things other people wouldn’t find funny, rant about things with people who have really understood and share my fears for the future. Thank you, thank you, thank you!”

“Our saving grace has been the Hawthorn Family Support Centre, run by Leeds Mencap. Hawthorn gave me a group of friends, other mums in my position, but… most importantly, they gave me back my little boy because they taught me how to make him laugh, how to entertain and enjoy him.”

More information & how to apply

Please contact Kath Surtees or Abigail Cunningham to discuss visiting and attending the centre on 0113 235 1331 or email kath.surtees@leedsmencap.org.uk or abigail.cunningham@leedsmencap.org.uk.

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