Sensory summer house for children and young people

Communal accommodation

11 families who have been subjected to
domestic abuse, violence, or homelessness

Sensory multipurpose summer house and
garden space for relaxation, mindfulness and 1:1 emotional health and well-being sessions

Moving into refuge can be stressful for children and young people. Imagine leaving behind everything you’ve ever known for the unknown. Sometimes, they must leave at short notice. At other times, it’s in the middle of the night with nothing but the clothes on their backs. It is often very difficult for them to understand why they have to leave, and they can experience feelings of loneliness, anger, guilt and shame.

As such, we aim to:

Provide emotional and behavioural support through our counselling therapies,

Ensure children are given the opportunity to identify and develop their skills,

Enable children to have fun while developing healthy relationships and sharing positive experiences with their new friends,

Support children to bond with their mothers, recognising that perpetrators of abuse can sometimes undermine the relationship between mother and child.

In one of our communal accommodations, there was a lot of outdoor space but not enough space within the property to create a sensory area for therapeutic sessions. It was decided that a sensory outdoor summer house in the garden would be ideal.

This summer house incorporates sensory and mood lighting. Comforting blankets, hot water bottles and relaxing aromatherapy aids are also made available. Children and young people can engage in sand tray therapy drawing, emotions drawing and use sensory toys. There are battery-operated speakers that can be connected to any device via Bluetooth for relaxing sounds. Therapeutic resources and crafts are also available.

The children and young people have enjoyed making use of the summer house especially when they are experiencing high levels of stress. This is a safe space where they can relax and access quiet time either on their own or with a member of the team if counselling and therapeutic sessions are required.

What CYP & Mums are saying…

The summer house is so relaxing. I would sit there all day if I could. I don’t want to come out when my online class has finished!

Ryan, aged 9

I like the sand tray drawer and the arts and crafts.

Traci, aged 5

My son loves it in there. I think he’d stay in there all day if he could. 

Sara, mum

Wow! Look at all the lights. They change colours too! This is awesome!

Mariam, aged 7

I like the house because when I’m feeling sad I can have some time to relax and I feel happy again.
Keegan, aged 10

This is better than the playroom because it’s more private. 

Liz, aged 12

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