All posts by Dan Casey

Dan Casey

About Dan Casey

Dan is our Marketing Manager. When he’s not busy working on marketing campaigns, co-ordinating the sales reps or bugging our web designer you can catch Dan learning to play ice hockey, chasing after his wife’s horses or chasing their child around the house! Google +

Guest Blog: Emily Brailsford of Parenting Additional Needs Reviews talks about Transition

Emily BrailsfordI should probably introduce myself, I am a married stay at home mother of three (2 boys and a girl) the oldest who has ADHD, Autism and epilepsy.

The guys and girls at ROMPA have asked me to have look at some of the products which they think might help my son as he’s going through a bit of a transitional period at the moment.  Not only is he choosing his GCSE’s but hormones are setting in too (he’ll love me for saying that!)

 

So I looked at a few products, some good, some not as good, but on the whole ……Good

Coping With Stress

The first product was the ‘Coping with stress’ card game.  I hate games.  I’d rather stick a fork in my eye than play a card game with my son (other mums of ADHD kids will no doubt understand) but this game was different.

Its more of a talking game.  It says for ages 6-12 and 2-4 players but I think it would have benefits for older children and young adults too depending on their level of understanding.

There were 4 types of card:- reducing stress, learning to relax, self talk and finally visualisation cards.  There was also a 12 sided die with body parts listed on it to use with some of the cards and help with relaxation.

This game could even be used in the car as there aren’t loads of pieces to go missing

5 stars

It is definitely worth the money and I gave it 5 out of 5 stars!

 

Another product which I looked at was the Theraputty.  I liked the look of this because Theraputtywhen my son has fidget toys in class, they need to be silent so not as to distract the other children.  The Theraputty is like a very firm Plasticine  which is also scented.

Now when I say firm ,I mean firm!  We tried four different putties each with varying firmness and a different aroma.  The tan Theraputty was supposed to be the softest but CRIKEY it was hard to manipulate!  My son is 13 and 5 ft 7 and he struggled.  On a positive note though, the scent was nice and it didn’t linger on our hands after playing with the putty.  Also the putty stayed together so I wasn’t picking it out of school uniform for days to come!  In my opinion it is better suited for hand injury rehabilitation, which I think is was the original idea behind this product.

3stars

 

 

I would give the Theraputty 3 out of 5 stars.

 

 

Science Zone Sensory Room a Success!

At Rompa® we have provided Snoezelen® Multi-Sensory equipment to a variety of places. When we were approached by Neil at the Science Zone in Bournemouth we were excited to be a part of a different experience.

The Science Zone is a new exciting science adventure for children, sponsored by Science Dome UK, based in the centre of the historic Royal Arcade in Boscombe, Bournemouth. It offers visitors access to science ‘zones’, where each zone has a variety of activities and features that will both stimulate and inspire children to learn more about the world around them.  From life-size dinosaurs, planetarium shows, musical bubble columns to digging for fossils and explosive experiments, every visitor, both large and small, will be entertained as well as educated. Also as the only registered telescope distributor in Bournemouth, there are state-of-the art Visionary telescopes and binoculars on offer for star and planet gazing as well as marine observing. It’s perfect if you’re looking for something that’s educational as well as fun for your child. There’s something there for everyone!

We recently caught up with Neil Carrington the founder of Science Zone UK to find out more about this brilliant project:

Rompa: Hi Neil, thank you for your time today and for choosing Rompa to help you with this project. Could I ask…Why did you choose to have a sensory room?

NC: We have already a large connection with schools and they were asking for a interactive physical activity rather than a visual dome experience. We also wanted to help SEN school needs 

Rompa: What difference has it made to the Science Dome?

NC: We have been operating for 10 years as a planetarium and science traveling resource to schools. The sensory room and OptiMusic equipment has allowed us to offer a permanent science service called the Science Zone – with different areas or zones of interactive nature and a planetarium – see Facebook Science Zone UK 

Rompa: What made you choose Rompa for the project?

NC: We have been purchasing equipment from Rompa for years – from a planet themed parachute to soft seating for our planetarium- so know good quality 

Rompa: Has the Sensory Room allowed more people to visit the sensory dome? 

NC: Yes – previous service was only portable travelling school service- the sensory room is open to public and toddler groups -previously not covered. Hundreds of the public have been experiencing science and sensory areas this year. We had 400 people for our opening day!

If you want to find out more about the Science Zone and Science Dome visit:

REHACARE in Duesseldorf

reh16_rwd_945x192_GB

Rompa will be at the REHACARE Exhibition in Duesseldorf next week. Running from 28th September to 1st October REHACARE is the leading international trade fair for rehabilitation, prevention, inclusion and care.

If you want to talk to us about becoming an international Snoezelen Multi-Sensory distributor be sure to come and see us in Hall 3, stand D48 or contact danc@rompa.com for more information.

Rompa Pop Up Sensory Room at Chesterfield FC

SPIREITES’ POP-UP SENSORY ROOM A HUGE SUCCESS

The use of a pop-up sensory room provided by Rompa at the Proact Stadium for Chesterfield’s game against Northampton Town at the weekend has been hailed as a huge success.

A number of youngsters who are affected by autism, together with their families, were invited to use the room as guests of the club.

The initiative was organised by the Chesterfield FC Community Trust in partnership with Accessible Derbyshire, a charity with the aim of improving the lives of disabled people, their families, friends and carers living in or visiting Derbyshire and the Peak District.

View the video slideshow

Accessible Derbyshire co-founder Gillian Scotford said: “It was so easy to arrange with the help of such a supportive club like Chesterfield FC. TM Accounting Services kindly provided the space and we invited families affected by autism. We also arranged for Rompa, the specialist sensory equipment company, to set up the equipment for the day.

“We never dreamed it would be such a success! All the families came along, all of them stayed and all of them enjoyed the day. For many it was their first experience of a match and it was smiles all around.

“The children were fascinated by the bubble tubes, interactive lights, sensory toys, ear defenders and sensory aromas. It was a very ‘safe and comforting’ environment. Knowing you are amongst others who understand makes the whole experience more relaxing. We have already had emails asking us to let them know about the next event!”

Ray Watts, who attended the match with his six-year-old son Jake, said: “It gave families with autism a priceless gift – the chance to experience something as a whole family in a safe and autism-friendly environment.

“A simple trip to the supermarket can be daunting for a person with autism, so to be able to enjoy a football match was absolutely amazing. I cannot thank Chesterfield Football Club enough for supporting this venture. It is a true testament to the club’s determination to make football accessible for everyone.”

Dawn Cook and her son Lewis also took up the invitation to use the sensory room. She said: ”This was the first time that Lewis, who’s 19, has ever been to a football match. Normally the noise alone would make seeing a game impossible for us but Lewis watched the entire 90 minutes and really enjoyed it thanks to the quieter environment.”

If you are a football club or a venue that would like to speak to us about becoming more accessible please feel free to get in touch – 01246 211 777 or by contacting danc@rompa.com

Rompa Provide 3 Sensory Rooms at Notts County Football Club

 

Notts County have opened three sensory rooms at Meadow Lane, becoming the first EFL club to provide specialist facilities for those who experience anxiety in stadium environments.

 

In a ceremony which also saw the club sign the Autism Alliance charter, the rooms were officially opened ahead of Saturday’s Sky Bet League Two match against Grimsby Town by Notts head groundsman Trevor Hutchinson and his daughter Tyler, who has complex learning difficulties.

 

Hutchinson said: “It was quite emotional to be honest. To see Tyler react the way she did, and how much she joined in and enjoyed it, was brilliant. I think that was down to all the cameras – she’s quite a poser when it comes to having her picture taken!

 

“Even after that she remained very calm, which proves the rooms do what they say on the tin.

 

“It was a great day and I’m really proud of what we’ve managed to achieve.”

 

The club launched the project after seeking advice from a number of specialists including Autism East Midlands, Rompa, the Shippey campaign and Indigo to ensure the rooms would fully meet the needs of those with complex learning difficulties.

 

Rompa, a leading organisation in sensory equipment and multi-sensory environments, developed the rooms, which are located in the executive boxes of the Haydn Green Stand.

 

Dan Casey, marketing manager at Rompa, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Notts, the oldest Football League club in the world, are on board and we hope this will show other clubs it can be done.

 

“We’ve provided three sensory areas to make the club accessible to people with complex learning difficulties, including autism. It’s such a great thing.”

 

The idea was first floated by Debbie Austin, who visited the club earlier this year in her role as specialist awareness trainer at Autism East Midlands.

 

Six months later, her suggestion has come to fruition – bigger and better than she ever envisaged.

 

She said: “Typically it would perhaps be one area or room, but here at Notts County there is an array of rooms – not only for people with sensory issues, but a room for parents as well.

 

“I am a woman on the autism spectrum, so I know myself that noise and crowded spaces can be overwhelming. People with this type of condition, who would otherwise have stayed away, can now be a part of the game.

 

“It feels extremely supportive. I think it’s wonderful.”

 

Apply for free tickets

 

To celebrate the launch, Notts are offering complimentary access to their sensory rooms for their next four Sky Bet League Two home matches:

Saturday 24 September: Leyton Orient

 

Saturday 1 October: Morecambe

 

Saturday 15 October: Crewe Alexandra

 

There will be an opportunity for sensory room users to make a charitable donation at each match.

 

To apply for complimentary tickets, please email beverley.markland@nottscountyfc.co.uk. Recipients will be selected at random from those who apply.

 

Future ticketing process

 

From the Luton Town match (Saturday 29 October) onwards, each sensory room can be hired for £40. The maximum capacity for each room is eight people, with a ratio of one sensory room user to a maximum of two parents/carers.

 

The rooms will be available to book in-person at the Meadow Lane ticket office or by calling 0115 955 7210.

 

Each room in detail

 

The rooms cater for differing needs:

 

The Rompa Snoezelen® Multi-Sensory Room

 

The Snoezelen® Multi-Sensory Room provides resources to calm people using light, sound, smell and touch while giving a fantastic view of the game. The room boasts a bubble tube in a padded base, fibre-optics, eight-colour controller, milky way fibre-optic carpet, laser sky projector, aroma diffuser as well as vibrating pillows to provide a relaxing environment to enjoy the match in.

 

The Rompa Multi-Sensory Room 2

 

This room provides simple resources to engage those who may find the main sensory room distracting. It boasts hand-held products to hold, squeeze and manipulate as well as a calming space projector which features a slow-moving lava lamp-like projection, a spotlight and mirror ball. There is also an aroma-diffuser which can be changed for different users.

 

The Rompa Sensory Integration Room

 

This room is for the more active and those with sensory processing disorders. It includes spinning, rocking, bouncing and balance as well weighted and compression vests to help those who can be calmed with this type of sensory input. It also has a range of hand-held tactile products to touch and explore, including hard, soft, aroma, smooth and vibration. Each viewing area also provides ear defenders for people who are sensitive to sounds (such as sudden cheers).

 

Information for parents/carers

 

– Parents/carers remain responsible for sensory room users at all times

 

– The parents’ room can be used by the parents/carers provided at least one parent/carer remains in the sensory room with the user at all times

 

– The sensory suite is manned by volunteers who are there to provide support to the users, but who are unable to provide dedicated caring support. Parents and carers must therefore retain full supervision of their sensory room user at all times

 

– Notts County intend to review their sensory room ticketing policy after three months as part of their commitment to ensuring the rooms are accessible as possible to those who need them. The club therefore invite supporters to send their feedback to beverley.markland@nottscountyfc.co.uk

 

– All parents/carers will be asked to complete a profile form on arrival, which will enable the club to gain an understanding of users’ needs. Please note – personal data will be shared with staff and sensory suite volunteers but will not be used for any other purpose

-If you would like to find out more about how Rompa can help your club please contact danc@rompa.com or call 01246 211 777

Rompa Gains Coveted ISO9001 Accreditation

ISO 9001 UKAS full logo

We are very pleased to announce that after months of hard work to prepare our quality manuals Rompa has achieved the ISO 9001:2008 certification, all our policies and procedures which we have had in place for a number of years were extensively audited and found to comply with the standards required.

As a customer this means that you can have confidence that the Rompa work to the highest quality as reviewed by the International Organisation of Standardization (ISO). It also demonstrates our desire to continually improve our business.  This sought after accreditation also opens doors for Rompa to do business with organisations who stipulate ISO 9001 as a necessity, which has been proved by our recent success by being accepted on to NHS framework agreement.

Part of our requirement under ISO9001:2008 is that we continually improve our way of working and we are proud of this great achievement and ongoing commitment Rompa as always will be passing on the quality that this accreditation demands to you!

Guest Blog – Introducing Perianne Walters

Perianne

Hi my name is Perianne! I’m an autistic adult with a 4 year old autistic son.

I wasn’t diagnosed with autism until I was 11 and I had major problems throughout my school years, but eventually I found my way into a special needs school where they helped me to understand more about having autism and ways of coping with the outside world.

I met my husband at 18 was married at 20 and had Edwin my son that same year. Unfortunately there were complications with Edwin’s birth and I was left in extreme pain and unable to walk since. There are a lot of things I can’t do for my son but I found setting up sensory activities such as coloured rice beans or pasta helps us to interact and him to calm down. Edwin has sensory problems and is a sensory seeker that just means he will seek out different kinds of sensory input witch we give him though sensory play. Edwin also has a home sensory room where he goes to calm down with sensory toys, lights and a large bubble tube it really helps him to relax before bed and sleep better.

 

I have been running a Facebook group for the past two years called Special needs and sensory play ideas – you can find it at https://www.facebook.com/groups/300929950082444/. The group has almost 12,000 members and is one of the main special needs play groups on Facebook. It has helped me a lot to be in contact with people online as I don’t get out of the house much anymore. I spend a lot of time helping parents, childminders, teachers, and carers of special needs children have a better understanding of special needs. I have a unique insight in to the mind of the child and that helps me to help others avoid the kind of struggle I went though in my school years.

My group has recently opened a website http://specialneedsandsensoryplayideas.com/ to try help more people with ideas and reviews of sensory toys and equipment. I do have a Facebook page where I just post day to day what Edwin been doing mostly sensory play related activities.sensory boxes,light box play and sensory trays. https://www.facebook.com/edwinssensoryworld/

I’m going to be working with Rompa to share some parents perspective on their products and I look forward to sharing this with you 🙂

The Future Of Special Needs & Disabilities Conference

Rompa and Winslow will be attending the ‘Future of Special Needs & Disabilities Conference’ at the University of Salford tomorrow the 4th February 2016.

Children with a special educational need or disability (SEND) make up a significant proportion of the UK’s education system. The Department for Education found that in England alone almost 20% were categorised as SEND. Those who work with an individual who has a SEND have recently seen dramatic changes in their day to day work due to the introduction of the Children and Families Act 2014. The act replaced SEN statements with more all-encompassing Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans and introduced a new code of practice that all authorities working with SEND individuals are bound by. There is further reform on the horizon, with a review currently taking place on reforming how SEND students are assessed in examinations and the best methods of monitoring SEND educational providers.

Bringing together representatives from across education, health, local and central government, delegates attending The Future of Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Conference will benefit from a review of progress on SEND from an array of different viewpoints, and explore the impact of the Children and Families Act on services. It will also provide an opportunity to learn from case studies on initial outcomes and strategies for embedding effective practice to ensure successful SEND provision in the future.

Find out more and book your place: http://www.salford.ac.uk/onecpd/courses/the-future-of-special-educational-needs-and-disabilities-conference

Working With Help For Heroes / Tedworth House

Help For Heroes Tedworth House Snoezelen Multi-Sensory Room

Help For Heroes Tedworth House Snoezelen Multi-Sensory Room

We had the privelege of visiting Tedworth House this week – a flagship recovery centre in Wiltshire run by Help for Heroes.  Tedworth House provides help to wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women of the British Armed Forces, including veterans.

Rompa worked closely with Help for Heroes Occupational Therapist Rosie Curtis to develop a Snoezelen® Multi-Sensory Environment to provide sensory interventions.

‘I run a sensory profile on Sensory Magic for each person who I work with and then provide sensory therapies based on my findings.

It is a fantastic space for them to explore their sensory needs and explore various relaxation techniques.

The sensory room helps the people I work with to function in day to day living.

The weighted blankets are very popular and are really effective in helping people to relax.’

Working with Rompa was an enjoyable experience and Rosie is clearly proud of her finished Snoezelen® Multi-Sensory Room

‘We went through many ideas and designs to provide me with an effective space to provide therapy in. We even considered the finer details such as the colour of the the cushioning – we tried to avoid anything that evokes negative memories.’

We are extremely pleased with our work with Tedworth House and Help For Heroes and we plan to work even closer with them in the future!

 

Dan & Kate’s Recent Trip To ASHA in Orlando!

It was with great heartache that Marketing Manager Dan and Product Manager Kate left the cold drizzly grey UK and flew out to Orlando in November to go to the ASHA Convention. ASHA – The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association get together on a massive scale with hundreds of seminars over 5 days and an exhibition area.

Dan & Kate took this opportunity to meet with existing suppliers and also to look at new products that are available across the pond that we can bring to Rompa and to Winslow to develop the speech and language product range! (As well as an opportunity to soak up a bit of winter Sun and enjoy the local surroundings!)

We met a lot of fantastic people and saw a lot of great products so keep a look out for them in 2015!