Becky has been a parent trustee with SNAPS since March 2006. How she actually finds the time between looking after 3 children and studying is astounding.
Becky started to visit SNAPS over 2 years ago. Becky is typical of many of our families in that they are often in search of a place where the stresses of life as parents of children with additional needs can be put aside and can be understood and not judged. For Becky, SNAPS has been that place. This is Becky’s story:
We have 3 children all with additional needs. We started coming to SNAPS 2 and a half years ago with Oliver now aged 5 and a half and Abigail who is 11. Oliver has multiple diagnoses, the main one is autism. Abigail has been diagnosed with EDS and sensory processing. We also have a daughter aged 16 diagnosed with autism. As you can imagine life can be very stressful. However, the main problem we faced was that we felt very isolated. Our friends just didn’t understand our lives and why we can’t do and go where they do. The friends we have met at SNAPS have become family to us. There is no judgement. We all help each other and offer support when times get hard.
As a trustee of SNAPS, I feel it gives me a chance to ensure the parents’ voices are heard. You can have all the business skill and best will in the world but if you don’t live 24/7 with disability and all the ways it affects family life then you just can’t grasp it entirely. I get to talk to parents on a weekly basis at the SNAPS sessions and feedback negative and positive responses to events and activities. I believe SNAPS needs to ensure that the children, parents and families remain central to the charities core values and being a parent trustee allow this to continue.