Kate and Vincent

Kate and Vincent’s Story

I am Kate & work in a Supported Housing Unit. I have worked in care & support all my working life and love working with people.

In my early 40’s I became a mother to a wonderful baby boy, I named him Vincent & enjoyed being his mum very much. From early on there were signs that Vincent was different from other children, he hardly slept, had big tantrums, challenging behaviours and he could be very hard to keep safe. Eventually, he was diagnosed with autism.

Autism School

We went through a few years of him not having appropriate school placements & life was very difficult, especially as a single working mum as I was called to collect him almost daily as the school could not manage the risks he posed to himself & others.

Eventually, he was placed into a specialist autism school and things improved so much & so quickly; it was like my son was finally accepted for who he was, supported appropriately & starting to enjoy learning, school was becoming a positive experience for him.

In 2018 I applied to the CWC for a grant to make our back garden safe for Vincent; Vincent loves water play & trampolining but the garden was too unsafe for him to use.

CWC Grant

The CWC advised me to apply for a Disabled Facilities Grant and said until I did they could not help me; I took their advice but didn’t hold out much hope, however to my surprise the application was successful & not only did the DFG agree to fund & make the back garden safe & usable, they recommended the front garden be fenced in, handrails placed at the steps and a light put in. This was fantastic news and I would never have applied had CWC not suggested it.

CWC then made a grant of £500.00 towards materials that we needed that were not covered by the DFG, this included fence panels, a gate for the shed and a lot more. CWC had provided me a Perkbox account, I brought all the materials I needed via this, so we got more for our money which was a win-win situation for me.

Work is now in the planning stages for the gardens but I have been told all materials that they use are specialist & won’t require any maintenance for 25 – 30 years.

Work will be commencing soon on the gardens, I have brought all the required bits from the CWC grant and a neighbour is going to help me do these small works.

A Safe Space

The impact of this advice and grant for Vincent will be huge, he will be able to play with water which he finds calming in a safe garden where he will not injure himself, he will also have a front garden that he can no longer escape from; I have had to call the police before when he run off naked in Snow and I could not catch him; these incidents will become a thing of the past.

Thank you CWC, you have made a big difference to us.