Group Offers Support for Siblings of Children With Special Needs

As you probably well know, there are many organizations and resources available to assist parents of children with special needs (in fact, you're interacting with one right now!). But did you know that there is also an organization devoted to the siblings of children with special needs? If you have other children in addition to your son or daughter with special needs, the Sibling Support Project is designed to help and support them as they grow up with their special sibling.

One of the Sibling Support Project's primary goals is the implementation of the Sibshop program, which is designed to help brothers and sisters of children with special needs come together and support each other. The Sibling Support Project trains local teams of support providers to run these programs. According to the Project, "the Sibshop model intersperses information and discussion activities with new games (designed to be unique, off-beat, and appealing to a wide ability range), cooking activities, and special guests who may teach participants mime, how to juggle or, in the case of one guest artist who has cerebral palsy, how to paint by holding a toothbrush in your mouth."

The Sibling Support Project also offers a place online for siblings of children with special needs to connect, mostly through a widely used Listserv discussion group. This resource allows siblings to ask each other questions, obtain information, and, most important, discuss issues unique to having a brother or sister with special needs. The Sibling Support Project also publishes several books designed to help siblings cope with their special set of circumstances.

To learn more about the Sibling Support Project, visit Article Last Modified: 11/03/2008