Serving an ace: celebrating a year of Whizz Kidz's Services

Whizz Kidz’s Clinical and Young People's Services teams had a year to remember

Whizz-Kidz is here for young wheelchair users. We provide high-quality personalised equipment that’s suited to their needs. But the wheelchair is only the start.  As a charity, we also run confidence-boosting activities to build the tools, skills and independence so young people can fulfil their potential in life.

Last year was a busy one for Whizz-Kidz, as recently released figures show. A total of 787 young wheelchair users were supported through Young People's Services. This included 74 Wheelchair Skills Training sessions where young people learn how to get around confidently, safely and in style. Importantly for extending the reach of this vital programme, parents, teachers, and carers can also be taught to deliver the training through our Train the Teacher scheme.

The team ran 96 activity days where young people could meet up, make friends and have fun doing everything from rock climbing to wheelchair rugby, creative arts to digital skills. There was something that everyone could enjoy. Highlight of the summer was our first Kidz Max Day.

One young wheelchair user said: “Thank you so much for running these activities. These have helped my well-being and sense of self so much as I don’t see other young wheelchair users in my day-to-day life, which can be lonely and isolating.”

“You’ll have fun, get to try new things, meet new people, and do things from cookery, crafts to bushcraft and dry slope skiing. Even been white water rafting,” another added.

These can be great days out for the whole family. “A few firsts for our family, canoeing, cycling together, head massages!” said a participant.

When it came to clinical services last year, 742 young people were helped with equipment or repair and maintenance. The feedback from parents whose children received equipment from Whizz-Kidz included a parent who said:

It is so lightweight that my daughter can finally learn how to self-propel and already has been doing so around the house! Transformational piece of equipment, thank you so much.

“More freedom, comfort and easier to get around. It’s given him a new lease of life, made such a difference to him,” another added.

“We can go on more family trips and days out because he was in a buggy before, and I have another child in a buggy,” a parent said. “So it was hard trying to go on days out so we would never go very far, but now he’s more independent, we can go to many more places. He can do so much more.”

Kidz Board, the group of young wheelchair users at the heart of Whizz-Kidz, continued to make their voices heard last year. They were featured in The Shaw Trust Disability Power 100 2022 as one of the most influential groups working in community action. An outstanding achievement.

Kidz Board member Georgia Head got to help judge and then present the Rising Star award. 

They were also nominated for the Community Organisation Award for Disability at the National Diversity Awards 2022 in association with ITV News.

Jon Sawford, Director of Services, said:

I am so proud of the number of young wheelchair users we supported in 2022 with equipment and youth services, offering high quality and engaging activities for young people.

"Families have been more engaged than ever, and we have set up new family activities. 2023 promises to be even more successful, and I look forward to sharing what we will be doing.”

Read Next