Help us to raise funds for trips and buying toys and equipment:
We are also delighted to accept donations of toys / equipment. To do so please contact us directly:
0113 216- 5133
To enhance the lives of children with disabilities and their families within the Leeds area.
Providing innovative leisure activities and top quality care, our committed and energetic staff strive to help every child develop their true potential. During their time with us the young people learn, they achieve and they enjoy, growing in confidence and independence.
But most of all we create a place where our young people have FUN while their families can relax, knowing they are in a safe, secure and happy environment.
The Leeds Weekend Care Association (or Weekenders Club as it is known by users) started in June 1998 as a small pilot scheme, funded and managed by Scope: (– the charity supporting people with cerebral palsy) and National Lottery. Established in June 1998 at a launch party held on Saturday 6th June 1998 at the Hawthorne Nursery, Londesboro Terrace, East End Park, LS9. Originally the scheme offered half day sessions for 6 children per session.
After its pilot year, the project became independent of Scope and is now a separate Charity and Company, managed by a voluntary management committee. LWCA was registered with the Charity Commission on the 25th August 1999 registration number 1077162. When LWCA first began the manager worked from their own home until our current office, Suite 4 Gledhow Mount Mansions was acquired on 20/06/2005. As the scheme continued to expand a further office was leased on 20th April 2012.
The idea for the Club came from surveys of parent’s opinions conducted in the late 90’s about what their greatest needs were. Parents said that weekends could be even more difficult to manage than school holidays because there are so many domestic chores and family tasks to do at the weekends that their other children missed out on activities and trips because of the need for one parent to look after the child with the special needs. This was even harder for single parents.
The scheme operates over a weekend, for 47 weeks a year. Offering families 6 ½ hours short breaks once a month.
In 2002 the Management Committee were successful in opening a second scheme at West End Primary School at Horsforth, Leeds 18. This ran alongside the original scheme, which is based at the Leeds MENCAP Buildings, East End Park, and Leeds.
In July 2013 the West End scheme moved to The Vine, LS6 which is a specialist college supporting adults with learning disabilities and complex health needs. An agreement was reached with Leeds City College for Weekenders Club to hire out the building to run the play scheme with the intention of merging the two schemes at a later date. Management had worked out that this would be more cost efficient, and that the new building was practically custom-built for our needs a cost cutting exercise in preparation for any new funding bid. The merger of the two schemes took place in January 2014 with both playschemes being sited at the VINE in Headingley.
The Out and About Project
The Out and About Project was launched with a £10,000 grant from Aiming High for Disabled Children in July 2009 and enabled us to run a pilot project specifically for disabled teenagers. The project was a huge success, providing disabled teenagers with the opportunity of accessing social and leisure facilities in small groups with our experienced staff team. Children’s Social care offered us a contract from 1/7/2010 and we have had a steady increase in membership over the Years. An additional £30,000 was awarded via a Children in Need grant for a 3 year funding opportunity to enable more young people to join and increase the number of trips.
A Pilot Group was launched on 9th January 2012 with funding from Children in Need for a total of 20 sessions following the success of the Pilot further funding was secured from Leeds Partnership Short Breaks to run future Projects. The project was offered to teenagers with mild to moderate disabilities to access music and for an opportunity to make new friends. We were fortunate to be able to hire the facilities at the South Leeds Youth Hub, which has a purpose built recording studio, music room and state of the art musical equipment, electric guitars (including Gibsons, Fender, and Stratocasters), full sized drum kit etc.