Parent Information - Additional Information & FAQ

Voluntary Organisations in NI

Your young adult may be involved with a voluntary organisation that can provide support during the transition from school to adult life or offer services when they leave school. In Northern Ireland there are a lot of organisations that provide different types of support to people with learning disability. Support can include structured day opportunities within community groups or social enterprises or employment programmes. There are also organisations that provide social and leisure opportunities.  Each organisation will have their own eligibility criteria which may include where you live and what support your young adult requires. There may also be differences in the referral and application process and programmes may or may not have time limits. 

Below is a brief overview of some voluntary organisations that are part of the Northern Ireland Association of Supported Employment who can support people with learning disability and/or Autism. This is not an exhaustive list and your social worker, school, careers advisors or transition co-ordinator may be able to provide you with details of other services in your area. (ADD TABLE from Edyth)

Useful Contacts SEHSCT

Below is a list of venues and opportunities that offer various discounts/concessions to young people / adults with disabilities and/or their carer. This will support your young adult to get out and about in their local area to socialise.

South Eastern Area

Bangor Aurora and Blair Mayne Leisure Centre

Bangor Aurora and Blair Mayne Leisure Centre, Newtownards offer a ‘Buddycard’ which entitles the carer to gain free entry and priority queuing eg for swimming. You can obtain an application form from reception. Simply fill in and return in person or via post.
Ulster Folk and Transport Museum offer free of charge admission for carers and the child and priority queuing for children with ASD. Just let the staff at the ticket desk know.It is advisable to email before your visit info@nmni.com or present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. It is fully accessible for prams and wheelchairs. Children age 4 and under are free.

Castle Espie

Castle Espie, Comber provide free entry for carers. Simply explain at reception that you are a carer or present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. It is fully accessible for prams and wheelchairs. Children age 4 and under are free.

Lisburn Leisureplex and Dundonald Icebowl

Lisburn Leisureplex and Dundonald Icebowl – Lisburn and Castlereagh Borough Council offer a ‘Buddycard’ which entitles the carer to gain free entry and priority queuing eg. for swimming, bowling, ice skating. You can obtain an application form from reception. Simply fill in and return in person or via post. You will need to pay a £5.00 administration charge upon collection of the card.

The Ark Open Farm

The Ark Open Farm provide free entry for carers. Simply present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. Children age 3 and under are free.

Exploris Aquarium

Exploris Aquarium  provide free entry for carers. Simply present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. Children age 2 and under are free. Exploris is fully accessible.

Downpatrick Leisure Centre

Downpatrick Leisure Centre offer a ‘Buddycard’ which entitles the carer to gain free entry and priority queuing eg. for swimming. You can obtain an application form from reception. Simply fill in and return in person or via post. You will need to pay a £5.00 administration charge upon collection of the card.

Contacts Belfast Area

The Grand Opera House

The Grand Opera House – Essential Assistance – offer one companion seat to customers with disabilities who requires essential assistance to attend the theatre. Your companion must be able to assist you in the event of an evacuation. Please note, only patrons over 14 years old may avail of this offer. This offer is not open or intended for those who simply want a companion or require assistance with transportation to the theatre.
The person applying should be in receipt of one of the following:

  • Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Attendance Allowance (AA)
  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
  • Blind Persons Registration
  • Disabled SMART Pass
  • cESA – Employment and Support Allowance Contributory Group
  • Industrial Injuries Benefit
  • Constant Attendance Allowance
  • Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (with Guaranteed Income Payment only)
  • Cred – Ability Card

Medical Authorisation – contact box office for more details
https://www.goh.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Access-For-All-Form-2018.doc

SSE Arena

SSE Arena – ESSENTIAL AID TICKETS
We offer a number of essential aid or carers tickets (subject to availability) at discounted or no charge for concerts and events.
The Belfast Giants offer a concession rate instead.
This is eligible to customers who meet the criteria below and would be unable to attend an event without the support of another person, who can assist in the event of an emergency. These tickets need to be applied for via our Box Office at the time of purchase of the tickets. 
ACCESSIBLE AREAS
Given the ability for the Arena to be used in an endless variety of formats, the precise combination of wheelchair spaces will be determined on an event by event basis dependent on event format, and where practicable, a choice of locations are offered.
How to apply:
Tickets within the wheelchair areas can be purchased online or via the Arena Box Office, however The SSE Arena strongly recommends that customers with disabilities notify them at the time of booking of any additional requirements or assistance needs in order to offer the best possible service.
To facilitate this, we have set up a database where we can hold details of those customers that need assistance to make it easier to make a booking and when attending a performance.
Customers can complete the Access Requirement form and submit it via email or post directly to the Arena, where they will be assigned a customer number. Then each subsequent time they want to make a booking, it is as simple as contacting the SSE Arena Box Office and quoting the customer number for our team to be able to help facilitate your requirement.

We ask that you provide one of the following when submitting your access requirement form –

  • Front page of DLA (no specific rate required)
  • Front page of Attendance Allowance letter (no specific rate required)
  • Front page of PIP (no specific rate required)
    Evidence that registered severely sight impaired (blind)
  • Recognised Assistance Dog ID card

https://www.ssearenabelfast.com/DatabaseDocs/nav_3687892__access_requirement_form.pdf

W5 

W5  offer free of charge admission for carers and priority queuing for children with ASD. It is advisable to email before your visit info@w5online.co.uk or present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. It is fully accessible for prams and wheelchairs. Children under 3 are free.

Titanic Belfast

Titanic Belfast provide free entry for carers. Simply make yourself known as a carer at the Visitors Service’s Desk and they will print you out a free carers ticket. You can also receive priority queuing however it is advisable to email before your visit reception2@titanicbelfast.com. Please not that certain parts of the centre are not accessible for prams and wheelchairs however they will do all they can to accommodate these.

Belfast Zoo

Belfast Zoo provide free entry for carers and priority queuing for children with ASD. It is advisable to email before your visit info@belfastzoo.co.uk or present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. It is fully accessible for prams and wheelchairs. Children age 4 and under are free.

Streamvale  Farm

Streamvale  Farm provide free entry for carers. Simply present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. Children age 3 and under are free.

Contacts Northern Ireland & Ireland

The National Trust

The National Trust offer an ‘Access For All Card’ which entitles the carer to gain free entry at any National Trust site. The card is issued in the child’s name and it doesn’t have to be the same carer every time so grandparents, childminders etc. can use it. It is free of charge and it is valid for 1 year. Simply email enquiries@nationaltrust.org.uk with ‘Access For All Card’ in the subject field. Provide the child’s name, condition/proof of diagnosis, date of birth and address and they post out to you within a few weeks.

National Trust now also offer a junior membership (children age 5-18) for only £10.00, which is valid for 1 year. Children under 5 are free.
Cinema – Children over 8 can apply for a CEA card which entitles the carer to gain free entry into the cinema-most cinemas accept it. Simply apply online or via post at ceacard.co.uk. You will be asked for proof of your child’s age, e.g. birth certificate/passport and an I.D. size photo of your child. They also charge a £6.00 administration fee for the card and it is valid for one year. It can take a week to receive the card.
Barry’s Amusements, Portrush – They provide a priority queuing pass for children with ASD, which allows them to access to a ride via an alternative route. Simply present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report at the Information Desk at the entrance of Barry’s. Please note, as advised on their website, guests without suitable documentation will not be issued with a pass.
Mountpanther Farm – They provide free entry for carers. Simply explain at reception that you are a carer or present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. It is fully accessible for prams and wheelchairs. Children under 2 are free. They also offer an admission discount for midweek, Monday – Friday.

Armagh Planetarium

Armagh Planetarium provide free entry for carers. Children under 16 are charged at £5.00 each. Simply present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report.

Marble Arch Caves

Marble Arch Caves provide free entry for carers. Simply present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. Children under 5 are free, however they still need a ticket. It is advisable to call prior to your visit due to water levels in the caves and to book your space on a tour. The caves, however, are not wheelchair or pram accessible and there is a lot of walking and steps, so it may not be suitable for some families.

Seaforde Butterfly House and Maze

Seaforde Butterfly House and Maze offer a discounted rate for the disabled person and their carer.
Butterfly House only:
£ 3.35 / child
£ 5.15 / adult
Combined ticket for the Butterfly House, Maze and Gardens:
£5.00 / child
£8.85 / adult
Simply present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report.

IRELAND

Dublin Zoo

Dublin Zoo provide free entry for carers and reduced entry for disabled children, €5.80. They also give priority queuing for children with ASD. It is advisable to email before your visit info@dublinzoo.ie or present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. It is fully accessible for prams and wheelchairs. Children age 3 and under are free.

Tayto Park

Tayto Park, Dublin  provide free entry for carers and a reduced entry for disabled children and adults, €12. They also give priority queuing for children with ASD for up to 8 rides, with the priority card provided for the child and their family. It is advisable to email before your visit, info@taytopark.ie or present your DLA entitlement letter or diagnosis report. It is fully accessible for prams and wheelchairs. Children age 3 and under are free.

Funtasia Water Park

Funtasia Water Park, Dublin provide free entry for carers. Adults and children over 3 are charged at €12. They also give priority queuing for children with ASD. It is advisable to email before your visit (especially during the summer months), partyoffice@funtasia.ie or present your DLA entitlement letter, carers allowance letter or diagnosis report. Children age 3 and under are free.

Social Security Benefits and other grants available in the UK

Below are potential benefits parents or their children may be entitled to. This is an area that regularly changes so it is best to seek advice from an Independent Advice centre, the NI Direct website or use the Make The Call facility at your local social security office. They include:

  • Disability Living Allowance (Children) or Personal Independence Payment (Adult)
  • Employment Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Carers Allowance

Self Directed Support

This is a fund which is available through your Health Trust and enables parents/carers and people with disabilities to take control of how their individual health and social care budget or allowance is spent.  There are a number of options available with most parents using the Direct Payment element to employ a support worker to assist their young person to access opportunities in the community, usually social and leisure.  You can also opt for a Managed Budget which means that an organisation will provide the support instead of the family employing support staff. Your social worker can discuss this in detail with you and will assess your young persons need and determine if this option is suitable and how many hours can be paid for. 

Blue Badge Scheme

A £10 administration fee and passport sized photo required. You will automatically be entitled if you receive DLA High Rate Mobility Component, however you may still be entitled under section C1 if you have a supporting letter from a medical professional. Cases are assessed individually.

Disabled Persons Allowance

25% Rate Reduction – apply for this rate reduction if your home has been adapted for your child’s needs e.g. therapy room, sensory room, additional bathroom/toilet/shower (see Land and Property Service website for more details and application form)
The Cauldwell Fund For Children
The Family Fund
Carebra
New Life