Our Stories - Special Needs Adventure Playground Story

It costs an astonishing £35,000 to run a South Lanarkshire summer playscheme for just four weeks.

There are trips to the park, bowling sessions, cinema visits and even BMX bike training.

But even more importantly, there is a high ratio of carer to child.  In at least two cases, there are two supervising adults to just one child.

The Teddy Bear Foundation was happy to make a £1,450 contribution to the costs of the Special Needs Adventure Playground, which operates each July at Blacklaw Primary School in East Kilbride.

The 35 children aged between five and 16 are drawn from almost all parts of South Lanarkshire – East Kilbride itself, Rutherglen, Cambuslang, Strathaven, Hamilton and Bothwell.

Chair Sheila Halford, who has been with the summer playscheme for almost 20 years, explained:”We are the main provider of a playscheme for children with additional support needs in South Lanarkshire.

“We provide a huge range of activities.  Today, we’ve got a trip to Queen’s Park in Glasgow, where the Rangers have agreed to take them round.

“Another group of children went to Playsport in East Kilbride for some fun on the BMX bikes.

“And some of the Teddy Bear money has been used to bring in a drummer today to offer some musical tuition to our older members.

“South Lanarkshire Council help us out with transport and an annual grant of £3900.

“But children’s needs are becoming more and more complex, so we need more staff to look after them.  That means it’s getting more and more expensive every year.

“The Teddy Bear donation is part of our funding jigsaw – we can’t expect only one group to fund us – so it has made all the difference this summer.”

Fun at Blacklaw Primary during July.

There's even the chance to make some noise on the drums.

Time to be creative as the kids get painting.

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