Over the last few months, we have been running a free snooker group for men who care for children and young people with SEND. The ‘Men’s Wednesday Club’ runs monthly on Wednesday evenings at the Stephen Harrison Snooker Academy.
The next meeting dates are: 18 October, 15 November, 13 December 2023, all 7-9pm.
There’s no obligation to play, you are welcome to just come along and enjoy the warm and supportive atmosphere. No need to book, just turn up!
The group has been well received and valued by those who attend. Here’s what some of our attendees have told us:
“It’s been helpful to have a safe space for men to talk to other men going through this. It’s a very ‘mum’ dominated world and us men can feel left out/like a spare part. Plus, it gives us access to information and a way to ask questions or for help… and a game of snooker with other blokes is always good.”
“It’s OK not to be OK, and this is a place where that’s recognised. Not judged. Just understood.”
“Talking with other dads who have a had a similar experience in an honest and open place makes me feel I’m not useless when it comes to my child.”
“Our journey as parents is often very different to that of other people… and having a peer group of other parents or carers who look after children with SEND is invaluable. Without wanting to play into stereotypes too much, within families that have children with SEND, it’s often the women who end up taking on more of the caring and supporting role, researching information, as well as finding and joining networks of support. And so, men may well find themselves without a support network of friends and peers in the SEND community. A dads and male carers group offers us the chance to come together with others who share similar backgrounds. It gives us a chance to be listened to and to offload, to vent. But also, to listen to the stories of others. Sometimes people come along because they’re just starting out on their journey to get a diagnosis for their child, or they’ve recently had one. And they’re looking for information or possibly advice. For others it’s a chance to share knowledge and experience from their own journeys that might be of help to others. For all of us it’s a very real form of support. We come together with others who understand and are going through, and it gives us a chance to realise that we are not alone in our journeys.”