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We began in 1987 as a self help group of parent-carers of people with a learning disability. LDF is both a company limited by guarantee and a registered charity and was formally established in 1993 to support carers of people with learning disabilities in North Tyneside.
Today LDF offers services supporting a large group of disabled people with learning disabilities.
Many people with a learning disability are also affected by physical difficulties, sensory impairments, life shortening conditions, communication difficulties and complex medical needs. Sixty to seventy percent will need life long care to lead fulfilling lives.
Additionally, two thirds of people live at home with family who, from time to time, may need support with their caring role. LDF offers direct support services to people with learning disabilities themselves and to families, parents and carers.
LDF exists to enable the ‘learning disability community' to benefit from many thousands of hours of support each year to enable access to key local resources and inclusion into mainstream community life. This includes leisure, recreation, play, social, cultural opportunities, advice, information, training, research, mediation, emotional and practical support. LDF does this through close partnership working and funding arrangements with both the statutory and voluntary sectors.
Many LDF services provide a dual role: they deliver social and leisure activities to people with disabilities in order to assist personal and social development, while at the same time providing respite/short break relief to the main carers.
LDF serves around 100 children and 200 adults and their parent-carers.