One of our Short Breaks sessional workers,Kinga, writes about her experience with Nadia, who she takes on music related short breaks. Kinga has been working with Nadia for about a year. Nadia has is 11 years old and has Autism. Whilst she has a good understanding of verbal English, her vocabulary is limited to a few words and she mainly communicates using single words or by echolalia.

"Nadia and I share many interests and we always have great fun together. Nadia has a great love for music. Even though she is unable to communicate using the words, she is able to sing along to songs. During our time together Nadia is always humming songs and she loves to dance whenever she hears music.

As she is such a big music lover, our breaks are usually associated music related. I have noticed that music can positively stimulate Nadia, as she becomes much more verbal, energetic and well behaved. 

Every weekend I try to find some music events. We have visited many places such as Jazz, Rock and electronic music concerts. We have taken part in events such as Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity, Chinese New Year, St Patrick's Day and St George's Day where Nadia not only had the opportunity to watch good live music and dance performances, she also learnt new songs and dance routines. Nadia was over the moon, dancing and singing with a lot of energy. 

One of our days out was to the cinema, where we attended the premier of Beauty and the Beast. Nadia was very excited and during the film she was repeating the whole sentences and sang the songs loudly.

When there are no music concerts music concerts on, we visit the Yamaha Music Shop as Nadia really seems to enjoy going there.. She likes to listen when I play the piano and violin for her. She also tries to play the piano by herself and seems to be very engaged."

The Disabled Children’s Partnership is calling on the Government to review the funding and availability of short breaks services across the country. Sign the open letter here