Accessing services

9 mins read

Key statistics

Caring More Than Most 

Conducted by the University of Leeds on behalf of Contact, using data from the latest Census (2011) finds:

When compared to non-disabled children, disabled children are:

When compared to other carers, parent carers are:

Caring More Than Most highlights a marked and unacceptable difference between the quality of life and opportunities available to disabled children and their families compared to those without disabilities.

Caring More Than Most report [PDF] (download  the executive summary [PDF])

Waiting times

Family Support Census – findings, 2015 [POWERPOINT]

Between May – July 2015, nearly 2,000 people completed our survey on access to support for families with disabled children. The results of the survey include key findings on waiting times.

Key stats:


GP involvement in disabled children’s care, 2011

A survey of over 1,000 families with disabled children in England about GP support for disabled children. The aim of the survey was to gather family views and make recommendations on the NHS reforms in England.

Key findings:


The bottom line – what do parents want from the continence supplies service for children and young people in Wales? 2007 [PDF]

This report is based on responses to questionnaires completed by parents in Conwy and Denbighshire. The aim of the report was to highlight the problems faced by families of children and young people who use continence supplies.

Key findings:

Open wide: families’ experiences of accessing dental care for their disabled child, 2005 [PDF]

This report describes the findings of a two-month consultation exercise on the theme of access to dentistry in families where there are one or more disabled children. The consultation involved a web-based survey and a request for parents’ qualitative stories.

Key findings:

Childcare, Play and Leisure

Contact’s Brighter Beginnings workshops: Independent evaluation report, 2019 [PDF]

In 2017 we engaged independent researchers, Fiveways, to evaluate our early years workshops (now known as Brighter Beginnings).The evaluation, carried out in 2017 and 2018, found that:

Getting support early on through our Brighter Beginnings workshops can be the difference between flourishing and floundering for many families with disabled children. Read the shorter executive summary [PDF] to find out more.

Fair play for disabled children: Bevan Foundation report, 2010 [PDF]

Supported by Contact a Family Wales, this report on play and leisure services looks at the experiences of more than 70 disabled children and young people and interviewed a range of providers.

Key findings:

Everybody here? Play and leisure for disabled children and young people, 2002 [PDF]

A survey of 1,085 families’ experiences of accessing play and leisure services in the UK and how services have changed as a result of parent involvement.

Key findings:

Parent support group survey, 2012 [PDF]

As part of our involvement in Early Support (which aims to improve the lives of children with additional needs and their families), we wanted to find out about the role parent groups play in supporting families across Wales. This report presents the findings of a parent support group survey.

Key findings:


A place of my own: a study of disabled young people’s transitions to independent living, 2009 [PDF]

This joint research with Shelter Cymru aimed to establish the key barriers that disabled young people face in making the transition to independent living in Wales, with a particular focus on how these barriers might be overcome through the effective provision of information and advice.

Wheelchair services

School when you are on wheels – Young wheelchair users in Wales: a snapshot of challenges and experiences in education, 2008 [PDF]

With Barnardo’s Cymru and Whizz-Kidz, we looked at how using a wheelchair can affect a child or young person’s education. We asked some of the parents and young people we work with to tell us their experiences of using wheelchairs in the school setting.

Key findings:

Wheelchair services for children and young people in Wales, 2007

This report highlights the key issues around wheelchairs raised by families in Wales. Our aim was to find out major areas of concern and look at how the National Service Framework for Children, Young People and Maternity Services have impacted services in Wales.

Key findings:


Disabled Facilities Grants (DFG) Wales – Making a difference, 2003-2008 [PDF]

This report, published by Contact a Family Wales and Shelter Cymru, looks at families’ experiences of accessing Disabled Facilities Grants (DFG) in Wales and aims to identify issues face by families trying to do access housing adaptations.

Key findings:


How we set the scene, 2009-2012 (Scotland) [PDF]

This report focuses on the services and resources available for disabled children in Scotland. It includes a map of local authority statistics on disabled children services and provides a starting point for considering how to plan, design and deliver services and support in the future.

Key findings:

For Scotland’s Disabled Children Liaison Project summary report, 2009-2012 [PDF]

A full report on all the projects, research and policy work conducted by the fSDC Liaison Project over the past three years, including work on the missing millions campaign.

Key findings:

For Scotland’s Disabled Children (fSDC) Diary Project final report, 2009-2012 [PDF]

The Diary Project, run in partnership with Perth YMCA, enabled parents and family members to share their experiencesa of being part of a disabled family. A few of the participants contributed to a complenting DVD highlighting the merits of blogging.

Key findings:

Related information