Funding boost gives Hartlepool youngsters new toys

One of Families First's young clients enjoys using a whale soft toy.
One of Families First's young clients enjoys using a whale soft toy.

It’s smiles all round for Hartlepool youngsters at a Hartlepool-based charity thanks to a funding boost.

Families First North East, a charity which supports children and young adults with additional needs, has received a donation of £993.60 for its Special Needs Toy Library.

The donation, from Tees Valley Community Foundation, has enabled the charity to buy a range of specialist toys to continue and build upon the successes of the Special Needs Toy Library, which is 30 years old this year.

The project provides specialist play and education equipment on a low-cost loan basis to families across Hartlepool who have a child with a disability or to organisations that work with a child with a disability or additional support need.

Section head for children and young people, Nicola Thompson said: “This type of specialist equipment tends to be quite expensive often making it out of reach for many families, especially if they only require it for a few months.

“The equipment we have chosen are all sensory which will help calm children and increase happiness.

“Some are auditory such as the resonance sea creatures which magnify musical vibrations so that they can be felt as well as or instead of being heard. We’re so grateful for the support we’ve received via Tees Valley Community Foundation from The John Wilson Fund.”

Due to demand, it is often the case that Families First North East have a waiting list to hire some of the equipment.

But thanks to the donation additional equipment can be purchased, combating any waiting lists and helping to benefit more families.