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Ted’s Travels

  • By Abi Hart
  • 25th April 2022

Last week we were joined by a very special guest at The Vinery Centre. Ted the teddy bear from Royal Mencap visited us on the first stop of his UK tour. Here’s a summary from Ted himself about all the activities he got up to this week.

Monday

On Monday I took advantage of The Vinery Centre being empty for the bank holiday and I had a tour of the building. I got to see all the amazing facilities that Leeds Mencap have. I saw the playground, sensory room, soft play room, activity rooms and offices. It was such a fun day and I’m excited to see what the week brings!

Tuesday

On tuesday morning I popped along to the sleep tight training course with Ruth at the Vinery Centre. I learnt all about bedtime routines, sleep cycles and how to help children get the all-important rest that they need to be happy and healthy! I personally think that teddy bear cuddles are a vital part of getting a good night’s sleep!

In the afternoon I visited the 3-5 year old playroom in Hawthorn, which is Leeds Mencap’s specialist nursery for children with learning disabilities. It was great to see all the children playing happily together and using the specialist toys and outdoor equipment.

In the evening I spent time with Tuesday Club, which is Leeds Mencap’s youth club for children aged 9-13 years old with learning disabilities. We had a fun-filled evening playing outside on the climbing frame and with coloured chalk and bubble wands! A big thank you to the group members for sharing their snacks with me- I needed it after all the climbing!

Wednesday

I spent Wednesday morning with the lovely Sophie and Zoe from the family services team. They showed me how they make online content to support our families that can’t travel into the centre. I even got to star in my own sensory story and spoke to a fellow co-star to get some tips!

On Wednesday afternoon I hung out in Jimbo’s, which is Leeds Mencap’s nursery. Jimbo’s is part of Leeds Mencap’s inclusive early years support offer. I had so much fun playing with the toys and exploring the reading corner!

In the evening I went to sibs, which is Leeds Mencap’s youth club for children aged 8-16 who have a brother or sister with a learning disability. We got up to so much fun making the most of the sunshine and enjoying the outdoor play equipment!

Thursday

On Thursday morning I was with the 0-2 year old Hawthorn Children. We had a fun-filled morning playing in the ball pit and going down the slide. I was even lucky enough to be fed a tasty midday snack!

In the afternoon I spent time with the centre support team. I helped out in the kitchen, became Adele’s assistant on reception and helped Paula count up some donations. I even sneaked away to the photocopier and got up to some mischief.

I spent thursday evening with Thursday club, a group where young people aged 14-18, who have a learning disability can come together to socialise and have fun. We got up to lots including playing basketball and climbing on the climbing frame!

Friday

I spent Friday morning at the stay and play coffee morning with Ruth the lovely family support worker. This week we explored sensory stories. It was so lovely seeing family come together to receive advice and get some peer support! I even got a biscuit. Yum!

On Friday afternoon I popped along to the introduction to Makaton course. Makaton is a great way for parents to communicate with their child that has a learning disability. I had so much fun learning signs and symbols such as hello and goodbye

I spent Friday evening with Friday Club. Friday club is a group where young adults aged 18-25 with a learning disability can come together and have fun, such as playing bingo!

I had such an amazing week with Leeds Mencap, meeting their beneficiaries and learning more about their services. Next stop on my tour is Jersey Mencap. I can’t wait to see what the week brings!

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