Support from DADZ4DADZ caring for children with disabilities and or SEN in the UK
When receiving a child’s diagnosis you will receive a pack with lots of various and important information. It may be overwhelming at first, having just received your child’s diagnosis. Just make sure that you keep it and go through it all methodically when you have the time to focus.
Apart from organising info about your child, you also need to organise yourself. The added time you spend with your child’s needs means less time for you. Could you be better organised? (we all could)
- You are your child’s number 1 advocate. As a parent/carer you know what best meets your child’s needs. The more info you can collate on your child’s needs the more clout your words will have when dealing with professionals when applying for help your child’s needs.
- Looking after your own health and well-being is key to all. The more efficiently you can time manage yourself and your activities the less stress you will feel and the better carer you will give to all that count on you.
There is a lot to take on and we will only be honest with you, it isn’t easy, but if you can develop a system that works for you, you will be better for it.
As said you will have a lot of information to sieve through and if you need any help in prioritising this we are here to help, either call us or click on a various contact us link.
- Any system you devise must:
- Make it as simple as possible. Make everything easy to find for you and others.
- Keep info separate but together so that individual authorities can access the info they would need: from GP’s, Schools, Cahms, CDC, Social Workers etc.
- 3 possible systems that can help you be prepared
- Chronological Order – Keep all documents in order it was received (date order) from each source. This will help you and others to read the info in a way which gives a clearer picture.
- Subject by subject – You select specific subjects that relate your child specific needs, thus creating a subject file. Once a subject has been chosen then collate all info on that subject chronological order, so again easier to read. It would be better to clearly mark each subject within your main file i.e. divided with labels or colour coding for each subject. This will help you go to each subject directly.
- Provider by Provider – For example GP’s, Hospitals, Schools, Cahms, CDC Therapists, etc. Use a larger divider for each provider or different colour code from the subject matter from the divider. Again everything to be chronological ordered.
The above is just options that can help you to be better prepared. My own preference is not to over complicate things. I have a file where we collate by provider by provider in a chronological order. This can make it harder to find specific subjects but normally if in chronological order to date I haven’t had too many issues.
- Master File styles (your choice)
- Accordion Files
- Ring Binders
- Coloured manila folders with tabs
Note: must be easy to grab and go with all collated info inside so that you have relevant information for the relevant meeting.
- If you have the capability you can also scan all documents to a pc or laptop, saving again to individual files by providers and automatically chronologically stored within the files. Or save to a dropbox or cloud storage in the same manner so that you can access from Tablet or Smartphone.
Personal management systems can be very sophisticated and can have significant impact on your efficiency. The following may help you better organise yourself and your time.
- Use a calendar – Either paper or electronically, always keep it in plain sight so you can see it or access it at any time. Check it daily.
- Use a planner – Either paper or electronical, link your planner with your calendar so they are in sync.
- Use a smartphone – I use my smart phone that links several individual calendars in to 1 master calendar and colour codes each individual so I know how to prioritise my life day by day.
- Make Lists – either with pen and paper or electronically, so that you are not reliant on memory alone. There is a lot of info and even the best memory can forget at times. Keep to do lists. Daily lists can be more specific but try to limit how much you need to do in a day and prioritise what is essential so that if you don’t have enough time, what you don’t do can be rolled over to another day. A weekly list is more an overview for your daily lists so you can even your days. Monthly lists similar to a weekly lists as an overview but more general non-specific tasks can be added to your monthly list.
- Keep important phone numbers safe by creating a few copies on paper and electronically. Always have 1 or 2 accessible at all times, so keep a copy at home, in the car and safely at your workplace.
We appreciate that being prepared can take a bit of time but once you are you will always be prepared and in the long term you will save time overall. Making your home life an easier place to be as you will be prepared for anything.
Not all of the above advice will work for all, please read and take what suits you and your lives. If anyone knows of any techniques and information that has helped them and may help others please emails us on firstname.lastname@example.org”
Also for additional assistance you can search for the closest support for parents, carers, caring for children with disabilities in your area by simply entering your post code. CLICK HERE