First ever virtual parent carer participation conference starts today!

Monday 30 November 2020

Today sees the start of our first ever virtual Parent Carer Participation conference. Organised by Contact and the National Network for Parent Carer Forums, this annual conference is an opportunity to celebrate the impact of parent carer participation, take part in a packed programme of workshops and webinars, and hear from guest speakers including Government Ministers.

Throughout the week, representatives from the 151 parent carer forums across England will discuss what they are doing to help make improvements to their local services for children and young people with SEND and their families – and some of the challenges they face too, particularly through the pandemic.

Carolyn Deveney, Head of Parent Carer Participation at Contact, says: “Life has never been more challenging for families who care for children and young people with additional needs and we are grateful to members of parent carer forums who have continued to volunteer their time to keep their local forums running during these difficult times. Contact is proud to support parent carer forums and to work in partnership with the National Network of parent carer forums – and we are committed to listening to what forums need to empower them and ensure their sustainability for whatever the future brings.”

Tina Emery, Co-chair of the National Network of Parent Carer Forums says: “We really wanted a way for forum members across England to come together this year, so although we’re disappointed that we can’t meet forums face to face for our annual conference, we are delighted to be co-hosting a week-long virtual one with Contact. It’s a great opportunity for forum members to gain more knowledge and also to take part in national consultations. We are sure that our programme of co-produced events and keynote speakers will offer something for everyone joining us throughout the week.” 

Want to find out more about parent participation and parent carer forums?

Join our free webinar on 3 December, 7 -8pm to find out more about what parent carer forums are and how they make a real difference to local services for children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and their families.

Sign up to join here.

Watch our videos

What is a parent carer forum and what do they do?, explains more about parent carer forums, parent participation and how parents across England are helping improve local and national services for children with SEND.

Making a difference, why should I join my local parent carer forum? In this video you’ll hear from parent carer forum members talking about why they got involved and the difference they make to children with SEND and their families.

Contact’s support for Forums

Contact offers a wide range of resources and support to Parent Carer Forums including webinars on key issues affecting them. Find out more about how Contact supports Parent Carer Forums.