Donation to Waterwings

Partner: Waterwings

Project: Donation to Waterwings

Based in St Leonards on Sea in Sussex, Waterwings provides a fully accessible swimming club for children with physical and learning disabilities and also offers hydrotherapy.

The children served by Waterwings have a range of disabilities: most have a diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy or Spina Bifida and some have problems with their heart, developmental delay, Downs Syndrome and Muscular Dystrophy, learning disabilities or autism.

Whilst some children can walk with support and others are wheelchair dependent, they all have difficulty in getting into the water and need assistance or hoisting. Local facilities are in the main unsuitable and, importantly, unsafe, because of overcrowding, lack of hoists and the pools’ temperature.

It is well documented that children with physical disabilities benefit from regular targeted physiotherapy. Hydrotherapy (no longer available through the NHS) helps with bone and muscle development, provides relief from muscle spasm and teaches patterns of movement that are vital for posture, sitting, standing and walking.

Waterwings is the only swimming club in the local area that provides fully accessible swimming lessons and is the only provider of hydrotherapy. Sessions take place at St Mary’s School, Bexhill where the school pool is specifically designed for children with special needs. It has a hoist, changing areas for children with physical disabiliites and accessible car parking for carers and parents.

The Axis Foundation’s donation of £3,600 will pay for the use of the school pool, a lifeguard cover and a hydrotherapy trained physiotherapist for a year.


Project feedback...

"This funding is essential for the running of Waterwings. Without it we would not be able to provide vital, life enhancing therapy and play for these wonderful children. This type of facility is not available anywhere else locally and we thank Axis Foundation so much for helping us to ensure it continues." Tracy Smith, Fundraiser