BritMums SEND Round-up: Marching on

special needs blog posts sliderThe daffodils have burst forth, I’ve ditched my thermals and the #BiBs nominations are open ladies and gentlemen. That must mean that Spring is well and truly here and the year is Marching on!

I for one feel as if I am waking from hibernation and running headlong into a mass of charity and educational campaigns. How about you and your brood? Are you glad to see the back of Winter? Are your energies renewed?

Today, Saturday 21st March, is World Down Syndrome Day. You can read about how to get involved here over on my blog Downs Side Up. There are articles to digest, films to watch, hashtags aplenty to share your stories and even simple ways of giving a small donation to the charities that support so many families. My favourite film of the day is this incredible music video by Libenu, showing just what can be achieved with love and support.


I’m featuring 5 fabulous blogs this month. Each well worth a visit and a follow.

Leigh Kendal, who writes Headspace Perspective, is a woman with whom I felt an instant connection when I met her briefly at a blogging conference last year. She has been through unimaginable loss, her baby Hugo died a few days after he was born. In this vital post she reflects on the pain of living through the date of his first birthday and how she turned that all around with a Twitter campaign and raised huge amounts for charity First Touch too. She is a true inspiration and I am very proud to know her. You will be too. Please read Hugo’s First Birthday: Survived

BBC Ouch got us all talking this month over their question about whether it’s ever OK to call people with disabilities ‘inspirational’ for doing ordinary, everyday things. It’s what some even call ‘inspiration porn’. Is it patronising, or is any one inspirational if they give just one person somewhere inspiration? Is a man with a learning disability inspirational for holding down a job or starting his own business? Is a child who is a wheelchair user inspirational for taking part in Sports Day? What do you think? Read Is It OK to Call Disabled People Inspirational? here.

Great news over at Our Life with Leukemia this month, as Yasmin has received the last of her treatment and is given the all clear. Mum Karen Attwood has blogged positively throughout her daughter’s gruelling treatment to support others and raise awareness of the condition. She is also tirelessly fundraising for Children with Cancer. Do read Yasmin Finishes Treatment at Great Ormond Street Hospital after two and a Half Years and leave a celebratory message for the Attwood family.

Sarah’s Adventures in Science is the proud owner of a Josh Award for Science. Her passion is bringing the subject alive to students. In this post Winning the Josh Awards on the Manchester Science Festival site, she recounts an incredible tale. It’s one of miraculous proportions, and testament to the power of curiosity to motivate children with disabilities. 

Steph Curtis who writes the incredible Steph’s Two Girls is running a series of posts about Pathological Demand Avoidance, a little understood variant of Autism. In This is our PDA Story Week 6, Pirates Go To Argos gives their take on the anxiety that the condition brings. 

Enjoy the rest of March and please do leave us a comment below or share a blog post in the Linky.

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About Hayley Goleniowska

A former language teacher and voice-over artist, Hayley is now the Mum of two gorgeous girls, the youngest of whom, Natty, has Down’s Syndrome. She blogs, speaks and writes articles on the subject for all who will read or listen.

Through Downs Side Up she aims to both offer support and encouragement to new families with a diagnosis, and gently change perceptions of Down’s Syndrome from within hearts through beautiful words and photos.

Her daughter Natty is a clothing model and an amazing ambassador for children with disabilities everywhere. She has appeared in The Sun, Mail Online, Bella Magazine and on ITV Daybreak.

You can find Hayley on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.


  1. 28 March 2015 / 10:22

    Thank you so much for including me in this list Hayley, it’s a real honour. I’m really touched by your kind words – I’m so proud to know you too xxx