We are a parent run organisation that supports the families of children with Additional Needs.
To access our support services diagnosis is not required but some initial investigation may have taken place eg, Health Visitor, Speech and Language therapy, Portage, CAF referral. If you are unsure please contact us for advice.
We currently offer support in North Surrey. If you live in another area of Surrey or surrounding areas we may still be able to offer advice or refer you to another support group.
Gemma Bailey - Founder and Director
" I'm a local mum with three boys, I founded We Shine in March 2016 as I felt there was something missing in local provision for under fives with SEND. My younger two are both Autistic and in the early days I felt overwhelmed and isolated. There were so many excellent support services available but it took me a long time to find them all. I wanted to shorten that process for other families and create a culture of empowerment and a community of support. Our network is flourishing and now I have even bigger plans for us!
Claire Davis - Operations Director
"I'm a Woking based mum to 3 children, who are 11, 7 & 2.
My youngest son Max was diagnosed with ASD aged two. I realised Max was different around a year old; it was an extremely emotional time and I felt very isolated and lost.
However after a journey through the various support services & parent groups, I became empowered with knowledge and far more confident.
I joined We Shine to help others who are just starting off on this journey and feel the same isolation and worry that I did in the beginning. I want to help them to feel empowered, informed and supported by others that have gone through what they are"
Caroline Hall - Events Director
"I'm mum to Bobby who is 4. Bobby has ASD and is non verbal. I thought that getting him assessed and diagnosed would open doors for us but sadly I was wrong. I was given very little help and advice because Bobby was only 3 and there appeared to be little provision for under 5's. I felt alone and very isolated. I felt I wasn't able to provide the help & support my son needed and deserved! The journey ahead was overwhelming & very daunting. Luckily the path I took led me to We Shine! I can honestly say I have never felt so positive about the road ahead! No one understands what it's like to parent a child with autism like an autism parent! I have made some great friends and so has Bobby! It's an absolutely amazing support network which not only enables us to share knowledge & emotions but allows us to meet socially and enjoy the company of those that understand the most! xxx"
Shareen Lewin - Operations SW Surrey
"I'm a mum of one. My son was diagnosed as severely autistic at the age of 2. Initially I felt afraid and alone and struggled to hold it all together. Meeting other parents in the same situation has changed all of that. I recently moved from North West Surrey to South West Surrey and found there is a lack of provision for SEN preschoolers in my area so I will be extending the reach of We Shine to this area."
Hayley Willoughby - Operations NE Surrey
I'm a Walton-On-Thames based mum to 2 boys who are aged 9 and 8 years old and certainly keep me busy! My older son has Dyspraxia with autistic traits and my younger son was diagnosed with autism and other complex needs just before the age of 3. It has been a tough journey but I have met some amazing people along the way and now feel I am in a place to offer my support to other families that need it. I hope to extend the We Shine services to primary school aged children across Elmbridge and the surrounding areas!