Doubletrees is an all age Special Needs School which caters for children with severe and profound learning disabilities. We have children and young people with needs ranging from severe autism to complex health needs and life-limiting conditions.
For these young people, and their families, to have access to a Therapist who can help to ease pain; who can help to manipulate and improve severely impaired joints and muscles; who understands Sensory Integration and how to help ease the anxiety and arousal that can cause; and who can encourage young people to advocate for themselves is, understandably, incredibly valuable.
Staff and families who may be struggling with the emotional strain of working with children who have severe physical and medical issues, or who may have life limiting conditions; staff and families who have to work with young people who can be aggressive and physically challenging; or just staff and families who have their own personal emotional or physical issues. Debbie-Ann has made a real impact on enabling transferable skills for these groups and giving them real mechanisms for coping with stress. She has also taught some of the pupils to work with each other in peer massage for example – the skill of tolerating and working together is one which again is hugely valuable to our special pupils. She will individualise programs and has even been supporting a pupil who is a contender for the Disabled Olympic swimming team with sports massage and meditation & relaxtion sessions – again in close consultation with his parents and coaches. This lady goes the extra mile and then some!
I am a teacher at Doubletrees Special Needs School. I coordinate Personal, Social Care; Health Education and our National Healthy Schools Award program.
Debbie-Ann has been offering her expertise in Holistic Therapies, working with both staff and students, for free. We are very grateful for all she does to support the wellbeing of our staff team – in fact she is a member of our staff team now!
For me though, it’s the work she has done, and will continue to do, with our students that has had the most dramatic effect. The students take a full part and really enjoy and look forward to the group sessions where Debbie-Ann offers massage therapy using essential oils.
After sessions with Debbie-Ann the students are happy and relaxed and more able to identify ways of staying calm. Debbie-Ann also works with certain students on an individual basis and these therapy sessions are an important element in providing the care and support that these young people require. From all of us at Doubletrees School, thank you so much Debbie-Ann x
Debbie Ann has worked with us at Doubletrees Special Needs school in Par Cornwall for two terms now. She has worked specifically with my Autistic Spectrum post 16 class and with the class staff. Debbie Ann taught us different massage techniques to use which have helped to develop the sensory diets of our students. Our students need to access a sensory diet throughout the day in order to help balance their sensory systems and keep them calm, thus able to communicate their needs better.
I have spent some time recording the results of our sensory diets on student arousal levels, including the use of different massage techniques and have to say that without sensory massage therapies our students would struggle to function in a calm and happy way. Massage has reduced their anxiety level and increased their ability to connect with others, through shared experience.