helping hands service...

Helping Hands Service is a joint initiative between Sparkle, the Big Lottery and Aneurin Bevan University Health Board. It provides a specialist self-referral service for families (parents, carers, grandparents and siblings) of children with disabilities and/or developmental difficulties in Newport, South Torfaen and South Monmouthshire.

This service offers an opportunity to think about issues that are important, for example:

Helping you cope with your own thoughts and feelings about your child’s illness including life limiting conditions and/or disability
Helping you to answer questions put by your child and those of friends and family
Negotiating and balancing your parenting role at home, outside of home and in medical settings and meeting the needs of all family members
Dealing with childhood transitions- e.g. change of schools, adolescence
Coping with the uncertainty of not having a diagnosis
Gaining confidence in your parenting skills
Helping siblings to cope with their own thoughts and feelings about their brother or sister having a diability/chronic illness

For more information about the Helping Hands service, please contact Molly Batchelor on 01633 748023 or email

Friendly Faces Service
Friendly Faces is a free and confidential service linking parents of disabled children with local parent befrienders.

Our Service: You’ve learned your child has a disability or developmental difficulty. Other parents have been there too. Talking to someone who understands can be very reassuring and can help you to look more positively to the future. That’s where Friendly Faces can help you. Friendly Faces is a network of trained, volunteer parent befrienders who can support you to understand a diagnosis or to help you through times when it feels harder to manage.

Our Befrienders: All of our befrienders are parents of a child with a disability or developmental difficulty. All befrienders receive training and ongoing support.

Accessing our Service: If you have a child with a disability or developmental difficulty (or they are undergoing a diagnosis) and you live in Newport, South Torfaen or South Monmouthshire, you can self refer to the service by contacting Molly, (see contact details below).

How will it work? The coordinator will introduce you to a befriender who will visit you at home or a location convenient for you for sessions lasting one hour. These may be weekly or fortnightly, or whatever suits you best.

Get in touch: For more information you can contact Molly Batchelor, at Serennu on 01633 748023 or email


what they say about our helping hands...

"When bringing up a child with autism you learn to adapt and change, accept that William will have behavioural problems and adapt accordingly. However, the ‘novelty’ of having a child with special and additional needs wears off and I realised this was how it was going to be day-in, day-out. I feel exhausted sometimes and the older William gets the more I feel I need support and guidance. Seeing the Clinical Psychologist on an on-going basis is helping me to cope with this realisation and with William’s growing needs”

Sarah, William’s Mum