Monthly Archives: July 2010

OSCA – Citizen Advocacy (closed 2016)

Website: No longer available as OSCA ceased in 2016

Volunteers to support and represent people with learning

difficulties throughout Shropshire

Telephone: 01743 368370
Address: OSCA Citizen Advocacy, The Roy Fletcher Centre, 12-17 Cross Hill, Shrewsbury, Shropshire SY1 1JE

OSCA: Sadly this charity ceased to operate in 2016 and no longer exists

  • creates and supports partnerships between volunteers (Citizen Advocates) and people with learning disabilities (Partners)
  • provides short term and crisis advocacy
  • gives talks and can provide training on advocacy and related issues (contact us to discuss)
  • works to find ways of enabling people with learning disabilities to take more control over their own lives
  • holds regular social events for advocates, partners and friends
  • answers enquiries and makes referrals
  • works with other agencies and organisations on behalf of our partners such as
    – British Institute of Learning Disabilities
    – Advocacy and similar interest groups in Shropshire such as Taking Part, Mencap and PCAS
    – Social Services
    – Health Authority
    – Providers of residential care
    – Local Colleges and other education providers
    – Employment services such as Landau and Enable


Disability related films on the BBC

Every week, the Ouch! Newsletter has a Stuff section, where we draw the reader’s attention to disability related programmes, either coming up or available to watch on iPlayer.

    On iplayer you can watch  Small Teen Big World, follows the relationship between Jasmin and her mum, who both have an undiagnosed form of dwarfism. Screened on BBC Three.

    Being a teenager is tough, but for 16-year-old Jasmine Burkitt it is even harder, because she is just 3’8″ tall and only fits clothes designed for a seven to eight-year-old.

    The 12 months captured in this documentary are the most important of Jasmine’s life so far. She goes to New York to meet others with similar genetic conditions; camps out at her first pop festival; celebrates her sixteenth birthday and tries to contact her estranged father who is average size. Unexpected events in this engaging teenager’s life make this a compelling film. Part of The Adult Season on BBC Three.

    Other programmes include:
    The first in a new series of Word of Mouth, originally broadcast on Radio 4, discusses the different ways in which deaf people communicate. Features an interview with Charlie Swinbourne.

    Sound Waves from the BBC’s Film Network, follows two families, both with children who are deaf. One has decided to give their son a cochlear implant, the other has not. Why?

    Issue 3, August 2010 – OUT NOW!

    Link to printable version Welcome to our third Newsletter.

    In response to readers’ comments, we have improved the layout for the Newsletter to make it easier to read online. Articles are summarised in a short paragraph and can be read in detail by following the link in the article.

    But if you don’t read the Newsletter online, don’t despair! The full Newsletter is still available in black and white format for an annual charge of £12. Payment should be sent to Shropshire Disability Network, to SDN c/o Tom Memery, Treasurer, Omega, London House, Town Walls, Shrewsbury, Shropshire SY1 1TX.

    Your news, views and events are always welcome for inclusion in the Newsletter. Please send articles to Sally Barrett, Editor, email

    To view SDN Newsletter issue  3 August 2010 (pdf) click here

    To view a printable version of the Newsletter click here

    Transverse Myelitis Society



    Contact Form:

    Telephone: N/A

    Address: Transverse Myelitis Society, 35 Avenue Road, Brentford TW8 9NS 

    TM is a rare disorder, involving an inflammatory attack in the central nervous system. This can happen anywhere along the spinal cord, causing a ‘lesion’ usually visible on an MRI scan.

    Attacks are normally one-off episodes, but sometimes recur in different places along the spinal cord. Many people, even if severely affected initially, will make a good recovery within a few months following an attack. But most people are permanently affected to some degree.

    The TM Society is a national charity completely dependent on donations.

    The TMS exists to assist members through the provision of information, personal support and financial assistance. These services are delivered in a number of ways, including:  


     Find us on Face Book (closed group) and Twitter @TM_awareness_UK

    Registered Charity Number 1108179

    Telford TM (Transverse Myelitis) Support Group


    Contact Form:
    Email: <>;

    Address: Ketley Community Centre, Holyhead Road, Ketley, Telford, Shropshire TF1 5AN

    The position of Support Group Leader for the Telford SG, is currently available.  Informal enquiries to Les Strachan, TMS Support Groups Co-ordinator.
    The Telford & West Midlands (formerly Telford) Support Group is the oldest UK Support Group, starting in 1996.

    We are a small informal group with a lot of laughter around the table as we try to share our experience since we all have varying degrees of disabilities. Family or friends are more than welcome to the meetings. We also have members with TM related disorders. ​

    This is a  small informal group supporting people with Transverse Myelitis and other disabilities.

    TM is a rare disorder, involving an inflammatory attack in the central nervous system. This can happen anywhere along the spinal cord, causing a ‘lesion’ usually visible on an MRI scan.

    Attacks are normally one-off episodes, but sometimes recur in different places along the spinal cord. Many people, even if severely affected initially, will make a good recovery within a few months following an attack. But most people are permanently affected to some degree.

    Family or friends are also welcome to the meetings.  Coffee/Tea provided. Wheelchair accessible.

    St George’s Disabled Cricket Club


    • Coaching sessions continue to be held at TCAT each Saturday 9.30 am – 11.30 am @ TCAT (Telford College of Arts & Technology) indoor sports hall
    • Outdoor training to commence Mid April @ St Georges Sports & Social Club (Telford)
    • First few sessions are free for new members, continued training is £3.50 per 2 Hr. session
    • Run by Telford‘s St Georges Disability Cricket Club • Contact details above for further information

    Area: Telford & Wrekin


    Email: Ian Halford

    Telephone:  01952 275 297/ 07773 155 840

    Address: St Georges Cricket Club, St Georges Sports & Social Club, Church Street, St Georges, Telford, Shropshire TF2 9LU

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    January 21, 2016 - December 31, 2016
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    UCanDoIT (now closed)

    Website: N/A
    Email: N/A
    Telephone/Minicom: N/A

    UCanDoIt is no longer a going concern and is closed 


    UCanDoIT was a charity teaching blind, deaf and disabled people a range of computer skills including email, the Internet and basic word processing in their own homes.

    Over the past 10 years nearly 3,000 learners, with over 80 different disabilities, have graduated from our course. We teach disabled learners from all backgrounds, all age groups and specialise in training individuals using specialist software and hardware.

    Many disabled people are unable to attend classes, which is why UCanDoIT provides a CRB checked tutor to give them lessons on a one-to-one basis, in their own homes, on their own computers.

    This is the story of Beryl, 79, who lives near Telford, Shropshire:

    Beryl says “I was diagnosed with wet macular degeneration 7 years ago – I had laser treatment  but the degeneration couldn’t be halted.   When this happened I was retired from teaching  but I still taught on a one to one basis. I was determined that my life should go on as normally as possible. As a sighted person and keen reader I had little interest in computers and had always enjoyed writing by hand, but I quickly realised that a computer was going to be a necessity.

    I have always been interested in current affairs and I so miss being able to read newspapers. I need to learn how to operate the web to keep myself informed and up to date. For instance – how do I access a ‘blog’? Last year, together with three other macular suffers/carers we set up a Telford branch of the Macular Disease Society. As you can imagine, this very much necessitates the use of the computer.

    I tried my local College and signed on for a 6 month course which I attended every session. They were totally incapable of loading up the programme that I was supposed to be working on – it was a total waste of time and money. I also was directed to the local library that had the computers but no tuition.     I needed and still need help from someone who understands the specific problems of a macular condition and has the patience to work with an impatient, frustrated but keen elderly student. Where else could I get it?”

    UCanDoIT is a registered charity and charges just £5 per lesson for learners on a low income and works on a sliding scale for those on higher incomes. The charity receives no funding from Central Government and very little from local Government and relies on grants and donations to continue its work.

    The Arthrogryposis Group


    Contact Form:
    Help Desk:  07508 679351

    Address: TAG, 22 East Croft Terrace,Lowca,Whitehaven CA28 6PY

    The Arthrogryposis Group (TAG) was founded by Diana Piercy whose daughter Sarah was born with Arthrogryposis in 1980. When Sarah was almost two, Diana was put in touch with another parent whose child had the same condition and the knowledge that she was not alone brought tremendous comfort and relief. Although there had been a suggestion of a group back in 1981 nothing had happened and Diana knew that there must be other parents and adults with AMC feeling that same isolation.

    In April 1984 Diana was in contact with just 6 other people in the country and decided to establish the support group. Diana produced a newsletter for members and in 1986 when membership reached 55, she organised the first national conference for families and professionals. For the families this was a first chance to meet others, exchange experiences and learn more about the condition from the medical profession. There was an incredible atmosphere of understanding, warmth and friendship that weekend, which TAG has continued through Contact, Support and Information. It was at this 1986 conference where a Committee was formed and a constitution adopted allowing TAG to become a registered charity in 1987. During its peak in the 1990s TAG held the Annual Conference in a different part of the UK each year to allow as many people as possible to attend. Up to 100 families would attend each year in addition to the many local events held everywhere from Scotland to the South West.

    In 1994 the first TAG Camp was held in Wales for 10 young people with AMC. They tried a range of outdoor activities from canoeing to abseiling and saw for the first time who AMC doesn’t have to limit what they can do. Over 20 years later, it is now a central part of TAG’s work.

    As we enter our 30th year we all hope the group can be re-energised with the help of previous and exisiting beneficiaries of TAGs work. As Sarah’s generation are now adults and need our support less, we are aware that over 200 babies are still born with AMC each year. Our goal is the same as is it always was: To reach out to as many of them as possible to ensure they and their families know they are not alone, to provide them with support, information and the benefit of others’ experience and generosity.

    Find us on Face Book and Twitter @TAG_AMCUK

    Registered Charity Number 1164158