A bold new strategy for childhood disability charity.

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A bold new strategy for childhood disability charity.

Pace, a ground-breaking Buckinghamshire charity that delivers life changing therapy and education for children with complex disabilities such as cerebral palsy, has today launched a new and exciting strategy that sets the charity’s sights on having a genuinely national impact. The new strategy describes how Pace aims to support many more of the 30,000 children and young people in the UK with cerebral palsy, and many thousands with other complex neurodisabilities, to reach their fullest potential in life.

The driving force for the new strategy is Pace’s long-standing organisational vision that every child in the UK with a neurodisability, and their family, should be able to access the sort of educational and clinical best practice that Pace, together with a handful of other specialist centres, delivers.  It is a practice that incorporates research-based early and intensive intervention for babies and toddlers and a highly innovative school curriculum that enables children and young people with complex disabilities to reach their full potential.

The new strategy will see Pace focus on disseminating the specialist expertise that it has developed over three decades of growth and development. It includes an emphasis on providing online support to families across the country – through teletherapy, training and digital support and advice. It also sees Pace playing a national role in encouraging the delivery of earlier and more intensive intervention for children with, or at risk of having, a neurodisability. The strategy also describes Pace’s SMART School programme, which will see Pace’s school become the UK’s first genuinely SMART special school across every aspect of its curriculum, a development that it hopes will influence many other special schools across the country.

Introducing the strategy, Pace Chief Executive Ian Sansbury said:

“This is a genuinely transformational strategy for Pace, and one in which we seek to address the needs of many thousands of children with neurodisabilities and their families across the UK. There are systemic national issues in the levels of support, advice, training, and services that most families receive. Too often it is only the most resilient of families who find their way to specialist centres like Pace.  That is fundamentally wrong – and we have a responsibility to ensure that children don’t fall through these gaps in knowledge or provision.  Children with complex disabilities like cerebral palsy have so much potential and we know that with the right expertise and support they can fully realise that potential. Indeed, it is their absolute right to do so.”

The strategy was unveiled at a virtual launch event on Thursday 13 October, involving many of Pace’s long-term supporters and funders.

Ian Sansbury continued:

“This is an exciting time, not just for Pace, but for the sector we work in. This is a long-term strategy, and we are excited to have our families, staff and supporters alongside us as we begin this important journey. We want Pace to be a force for positive change in our sector, championing best practice, encouraging collaboration and learning and, above all, helping to ensure that many more children and families are able to access the most impactful provision and support.”

If you want to learn more about Pace’s plans you can view the Strategy and Impact Report.