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Parents and Carers Create First Online Special Needs Handbook

Author: Netbuddy

Published: 2010-11-17 : (Rev. 2013-06-05)

Synopsis and Key Points:

Netbuddy lists practical tips and suggestions from people with first-hand experience of special needs.

Main Digest

Netbuddy is the first online resource of its kind offering hundreds of simple, yet ingenious solutions to everyday issues encountered by parents, carers, teachers and therapists working with learning disability.

From brushing teeth to managing challenging behavior, Netbuddy lists nearly 800 practical tips and suggestions from people with first-hand experience of special needs. And the tip count grows daily as more people contribute.

Netbuddy Director Deborah Gundle, who's son has learning disabilities, said: "The idea for Netbuddy came about when my son was small. I spent so much time and energy solving day-to-day problems, which I felt sure other people had overcome before me. Then, one day it came to me - I should start writing down my ideas for other people to use, and encourage them to share their own."

Deborah's original plan was to write a 'Special Needs Handbook" but, as she started collecting tips, the idea evolved into an interactive website, where people could add suggestions and help create the resource themselves.

"People can come to Netbuddy for practical suggestions, they can talk to other people on the interactive forum and they can share their own 'eureka moments', within a community that understands and appreciates the hard work that has gone into those successes," Deborah said. Since launching in September, the site has created a great deal of excitement amongst parents, carers, teachers, therapists and other professionals working with learning disability.

"I think it's really hit a chord because there is nothing else quite like it," said Deborah. "It is the perfect example of a community of people using the internet to create something uniquely valuable for themselves."

Below are just some of the comments Netbuddy has received from parents:

"Truly a much-needed resource for parents who have special needs kids. Our days are just too focused on our children's needs that it rarely leave us much time to research for solutions."

"This is such a great idea. Nobody really knows how to cope with the day to day nitty gritty unless they've experienced it personally"

"What a brilliant idea. I wish there had been something like this when my son was younger, he's now 42."

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