Provincial Grand Lodge of Dorset

The official website of Dorset Freemasonry


For Province P0060 - Province of Dorset.


Aug. 2020

Children with complex disabilities will have holidays with their families thanks to a £60,000 grant

Hundreds of children and young people with complex physical and learning disabilities will be able to take a break during the school holidays, thanks to a grant from Dorset Freemasons to the Diverse Abilities charity's Coping with CHAOS programme. Children with complex disabilities tend to be excluded from other holiday activities due to unwelcoming attitudes, parents' fear of being judged and clubs not being able to cater to the children's needs. They can find it hard to interact with peers, and siblings can also feel very isolated. For many, this project provides the only chance they get to go out in the holidays.

Diverse Abilities supports children and young people from across the county, with challenging conditions such as cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, epilepsy and autism. Many of them have no sense of danger and have behavioural issues associated with their conditions which can make trips away during school holidays challenging. Coping with CHAOS supports the whole family, providing suitable activities for everyone to enjoy together. This includes the opportunity for parents to speak with other families facing the same challenges. This includes brothers and sisters of the children, who often have less attention from parents who need to concentrate on their disabled child. The grant from Dorset Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF), which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends, from across England and Wales.

Clare Rochford, Children's Team Manager at Diverse Abilities, said: 'We're very grateful to Dorset Freemasons for their generous grant. For many children with severe physical and learning disabilities across the county, our project provides the only chance they get to go out in the holidays and it's a vital resource not only for the children but also for their parents and siblings.'

Graham Glazier head of Dorset Freemasons, said: 'I'm very pleased we've been able to help Diverse Abilities with their hugely important project. For all sorts of reasons children with these kinds of disabilities find themselves isolated. This a marvellous way for these children and their families to enjoy the holidays safely.'


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