GAD and Mencap – Independent Support


Greenwich Association of Disabled People (GAD) and Greenwich Mencap have been working for the benefit of disabled people for nearly 40 years. We joined forces in 2014 to share expertise and to enable us to support as many young people and families as possible through the Independent Support programme.

We both have offices within the Forum in Slide2Greenwich and have a combined team of seven Independent Supporters fully trained and with specialist expertise in working with young disabled people. All of our team are fully vetted and DBS checked.

All referrals and initial contact is via GAD who then allocates the best member of the team to support you through the EHC process.

The Forum @ Greenwich, Trafalgar Road, Greenwich, SE10 9EQ

Tel: 020 8269 0674




In September 2014, the Government made changes to the law for children and young people aged 0-25 with special educational needs and disabilities. (SEND) The new law will result in changes to the way children and young people receive support from their local council, health and social care services and nursery, school or college.

Instead of a “Statement” people will have an Education, Health and Care plan (EHC) – for the first time combining health and social care with education to achieve your aspirations. Not yet in school or not getting support?

If a child or young person is not yet in school or has a learning need or disability, which is not currently being supported in a school, you will need an assessment to determine if they need support identified through a EHC plan. Existing statements or LDA

If a child or young person has an existing SEN Statement, the local authority will be in contact with you to inform you when your Statement or LDA is due to be transferred into an EHC plan.

EHC plans are to support a child or young person where their needs cannot be met by the existing resources in schools or colleges. It looks at the aspirations of a child or young person and sets out the duties of statutory authorities to achieve those aspirations.

Our service aims to make the process simple and transparent putting a child or young person at the heart of their plan.

What we can do:

Explain how the statutory assessment process works, supporting you through the process from making a request for an assessment through to reviewing the final EHC plan

Ensure your views, needs and wishes are listened to throughout the process and are clearly reflected in the final plan

Attend meetings with you for support

Ensure you can fully participate in the assessment process

Support you in drafting letters and other supporting paperwork

Reviewing with you, your EHC plan to ensure it is fit for purpose

Signpost or refer you to other support or specialist services if required

Provide information on how to access the ‘Local Offer’

What is a Local Offer?

The Local Offer is a detailed list of services and provision accessible for people who live in Bexley or Greenwich. It will help you to identify relevant services that may be needed to support individual needs and wellbeing.

We can help you to understand what is available locally.

Personal Budgets

A new feature of the EHC plans is the opportunity to request a Personal Budget. This can enable young people or their families to have more control over how and when they can receive support. We can provide more information on this and how to request a budget during the EHC process.

Named contact

When you contact us or are referred to us, we will give you a named Independent Supporter who will support you throughout the process.

We have team members fluent in BSL and can produce material in easy-read format or Braille.

Click link below to download a flyer in PDF format: