We’re a charity for special needs and disabled children, promoting inclusion and improving life skills and opportunities through respite clubs, education, parent support and advocacy
Embrace launched in August 2014 with a parent support group. The parents told us they needed some respite support so later that year we set up a Saturday club for the children to make friends and give their parents a break.
In Feb 2015 we moved into the Hive at Eastbourne Mencap and were happy in our new home for a year. Eastbourne Mencap then gave us a week’s notice that we have to leave as they needed their building back for themselves. It looked likely that Embrace would have to close and the children would be left with nothing. We searched all local community centres that would allow us to hire just for the Saturday, but there was nothing available that would accommodate the children’s needs that would allow us to rent on those terms.
The trustees found a suite in The Old Printworks and moved in there, taking out a long lease. Our new landlords were very supportive and within the year offered to build us a bespoke Embrace Centre out of an old garage they had. They even supported us with it financially to an extent.
The Embrace Centre is now a thriving charity both in the community, online and at the centre. Our CEO and founder has become the Eastbourne Borough Council disability champion and the lead member for Equality and Community Safety for the Council.
Embrace are also a multi award winning charity with partners all over the country and a huge amount of local support.
Since the pandemic there have been lots of changes to how Embrace operates, but we haven’t lost our driving force ‘because no child should feel alone’.