HPCI Member update 18 June 2024

Welcome to our latest update, where we’re very excited to tell you about some job vacancies that we have coming up.  This update also covers:

  • Collecting feedback: from children with SEND; from parents and those 18+ about adult social care in Herts; about hospital discharge at the Lister; and from those with learning disabilities on GP services.
  • Events – a SEND information fayre in Hemel on 20 June.
  • Information about a relaunched SEND Activities Directory for Herts and a SEND toolkit for schools and SENCOs.
  • Support – extended hours for the Herts Neurodiversity Hub and a new support search tool from the Family Fund.
  • Research – a chance to get involved in a project looking at food and mealtimes in special schools.

HPCI vacancies

We currently have a number of fantastic opportunities:

  • to help improve how schools support neurodivergent children in Hertfordshire
  • to help ensure the voices of families are heard by decision makers in the county

Are you organised? Driven? Good at working with people? Do you want to help schools improve how they work with families of neurodivergent children? Or help support parent representatives share the views and experiences of families?

Do you want to work for an organisation that will train and support you?  That offers work that can be flexible around your family commitments? And that makes a difference?

Herts Parent Carer Involvement is recruiting!  Please click here for more information about a number of part-time roles that we are looking to fill – the closing date for applications is noon on Sunday 7 July.

Collecting feedback

Voices of Hertfordshire
To help get more young people engaged in shaping services for those with SEND, Hertfordshire County Council (HCC) have launched their new Voices of Hertfordshire social media channels.  Children and Young people can get involved on both youtube and instagram from 11th June.

Information and advice on adult social care
HCC is running a session on 27th June 2024 in Welwyn Garden City for people to tell them their experience of looking for information about Adult Care Services either for themselves or for someone they care for. A one-to-one session can also be arranged for anyone unable to attend in person.

Lister Hospital
The Lister hospital is looking for people who have experienced hospital discharge to join a group to help improve their discharge process.  The group will meet once a month on a Thursday at 11.00 via Microsoft teams.
If you are interested in joining the group or would like more information then please contact Moreblessing Zvorwadza moreblessing.zvorwadza@nhs.net or Okon Ekpo okon.ekpo@nhs.net

Feedback relating to GP Surgeries
HCC is looking for feedback about GP surgeries, from people with learning disabilities.  The email address for feedback is purplestarstrategy@hertfordshire.gov.uk and the HCC purple star department will follow-up with the GP practice, including further training if required.

Events and Courses

SEND Information Fayre
DSPL8 are running a free SEND Information fayre on 20th June. Lots of fantastic organisations will be represented, and the fayre will be a great opportunity to discover local services, chat with experts and connect with other families.


Step 2 Skills Newsletter
The June edition of the Step 2 Skills Newsletter is out now providing information about adult learning and employment support in Herts. You can sign up for the newsletter on their website here.

Hertfordshire County Council SEND Activities Directory
The SEND community activities directory has information about a wide range of support groups and local activities suitable for children and young people with SEND.

Hertfordshire SEND Toolkit
The Hertfordshire SEND Toolkit is designed for professionals to support the delivery of high quality support for children and young people with SEND.  While it’s aimed at professionals, it is free to download and can give families an overview about tools and resources that are available to schools to support their child.


Neurodiversity Support Hub
The opening hours of the Herts Neurodiversity Support Hub have recently been extended. Term time Opening Hours are now:

  • Monday, Wednesday and Friday  – 9AM – 1PM
  • Tuesday and Thursday – 9AM – 3PM
  • Wednesday Evening (bookable 30 minute time slots) – 7PM – 9PM

In school holidays the hours are Monday to Friday 9AM – 1PM and the hub is closed on Bank Holidays.

Family Fund – Helping Disabled Children

The national charity Family Fund has launched a new ‘Discover more support’ search tool on their website. It can help you more easily find services best suited to you and your family.  Featuring topics like money and benefits, mental health and wellbeing, education and learning and disability, you can now browse through 130 trusted organisations listed on the new search tool – to find available support services in your local area, or nationally.  To use the tool and find out more, head to Family Fund’s website.


Research to understand and improve food and mealtimes in special schools
The University of Hertfordshire and the University of Essex are conducting a research project which aims to understand and improve food and mealtimes in special schools.  They are looking for up to 8 parents or carers of children and young people with SEND, and up to 8 children and young people with SEND aged 10-19 to get involved in the project.

Thanks for reading – any feedback or queries, please let us know.