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Mark Warner Holidays - Special Needs Childcare & Kyd

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Following on from my previous post about Mark Warner Holidays being perfect for Special Needs Children I thought I would update you on what we actually thought about the service itself.

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Meeting His SEN Assistant...

Kyra and Kyd hit it off from day one, she was his perfect match. Upbeat, energetic and confident. Kyd was her first SEN child at the resort although there was another child there when we got there he had a separate assistant. Kyd met Kyra on Day 1, he was introduced by the head of the kids club who had a big role in his week too. He was smitten at first sight I think, he is a big tart.

The Activity Schedule...

I took a picture of what Kyd was up to each day... As you can see it is a hectic schedule.

He didn't have to attend all day every day but he loved it so much that he was there all every day, apart from the morning he slept in because he was shattered. He tried everything on the list and if he didn't get on with it or he was too tired from the big activities (which happened quite a bit I think) they simply changed the activity Kyd and Kyra did or he joined a different group for a short while. It was all up to him and he was happy with being in control.

He got 3 certificates at the end of the week and he was buzzing by the end of the ceremony. He showed them to everyone who passed, saying 'I got 3, look!!' with the biggest grin on his face. You could see the joy on the faces of passers by, his happiness was infectious.

Kyd is a thrill seeker. This holiday brought him new challenges. New challenges make for a happy Kyd. A happy Kyd, makes for a happy Mum! He had such an amazing time, he did so many new things we lost count on day 3. He didn't feel pressured, he fitted into the group amazingly. He smiled non stop for a whole week, made incredible memories and for that I am so grateful.

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The Kids of the Kidz Club...

Kyd made some great friends at Kidz Club. The children were all a credit to their parents, especially these two. They made Kyd feel like he was king. He smiled every time he said their names and they soon became best friends.

Whilst doing the 'End of week' show, Kyd was up on stage with the girls dancing to Girls Aloud (Love Machine), in the audience was the rest of the club, all of the different groups of all ages. Just as they came on stage you heard several kids cheering Kyd on, then throughout they continued to cheer his name, encouraging him with every step. It brought a tear to my eye. According to the other parents they had the same reaction, so I wasn't being a wimp. It had just dawned on me how many friends he had made in such  short time and how lovely they all were.

To the parents of these two boys and all of the children at Lakitira that week... Keep up the good work. They couldn't be better ladies and gentlemen if they tried and I believe they will go far in this world as they grow. It's rare to find kids as lovely as these, with no issues with differences or disabilities, they just see a friend. This world needs more people like them and more parents like you. Thank You.

The Mark Warner Kidz Club Team...

The Kidz Club is built up by a great team of experienced and young childcare professionals, carefully picked by Mark Warner for their mix of knowledge, energy and personality. Each member has something unique to offer and a special way with the kids, all of which you can see from the moment you  meet them.

I couldn't thank this team enough for their part in Kyd's perfect holiday. He was smitten with them all from day one and they treated him with the same respect as the other children with no patronisation or hint of being singled out, all of which are mine and Kyd's worst nightmare when it comes to any childcare. He is 11, he may have Down Syndrome but he needs to be treated as though he is 11 and not 5. They succeeded in doing this like it was a breath of fresh air.

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When we arrived we realised there was another child using the Special Needs service and that child had completely different needs from Kyd, I don't know what the diagnosis of that child was because I'm a wimp and didn't speak to the mum before she went home. It's hard to approach someone with a special needs child, especially when on holiday. Some people just don't want to discuss it and you have to keep that in mind when you're out and about, just because we have that in common, doesn't mean they want to chat. So, from a distance I observed the team (in a non creepy way) and how they dealt with the needs of this child. I was pleased, overwhelmed and I have to admit my heart melted a little as I watched the bond the child developed with his assistants. You could see the amazing way they communicated, worked with him and developed his skills throughout his week and for a mum of a child with special needs, this is exactly what you want to see from a team of professionals. If every team could be this good, we'd eliminate a huge percentage of SEN parental worry in this world.

This team is a credit to Mark Warner and I really hope that their head office appreciate all that they do. This was the first holiday in which I have been able to say it was a 'real holiday' for us all. We each got our own time to ourselves and I can actually say that I relaxed for the first time in ages. This was largely due to knowing the children were both in great hands and for that I am truly grateful.

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I would truly recommend using Mark Warner as a Mum in general but as a Mum of a special needs child, I'd say it is a must for family's who want peace of mind that their child is being well looked after. After our experience at Lakatira I will be sure to shout about it to any parent who asks about holidays. Not because I am a Mark Warner Blogger but because I truly believe this holiday could be the key to many families holiday issues. Life is hard sometimes and it's made easier by people who really pay attention to the needs of others, Mark Warner seem to have done this. If you speak to them in advance they will try their best to accommodate you and your child to the highest standards of care. The customer service for this is next to none and I am proud to have been able to have worked with them this summer. I am also very proud to have met such a lovely team.

I don't think I could express highly enough what this holiday meant to Kyd and what they've done for his confidence but I would just like to say Thank You, from him and us. Hopefully we will see you again soon!