Our long term goal is to build and launch the UK’s first dedicated leisure centre for children and young people with disabilities and their families, but we know the need is here and now, and holidays can be particularly tricky.
We set up the first Pop Up Leisure Centre in the Summer holidays, 2018 as a pilot for the main centre. This centre was a smaller version of our main centre and was held at Emerson’s Green Primary School. It was a huge success so we are now running Pop Up Leisure Centres every Easter and Summer holidays until the main centre is built.
The first Pop Up Leisure Centre, Summer 2018
We held our first Pop Up Gympanzees Centre at Emerson’s Green Primary School for 4 weeks. We set up 6 play areas; soft play, sensory room, indoor playground, Gym, Trampolines and Music room with a café serving tea and cake.
Some of our highlights:
- We had over 1100 booking for children and young people with any disabilities, and their siblings over the 4 weeks.
- 98% of those attending didn’t know of anywhere that compared to the Gympanzees Pop Up
- 99% of disabled children, their siblings and their parents enjoyed coming to
- 93% of parents felt they were able to talk to other families – helping to take families out of isolation
- Families travelled from as far as Barnstaple, Reading and Worcester with one family making a holiday of it and staying in a hotel.
- All 22 reviews on Facebook and Google were 5 stars
- BBC Radio Bristol’s video of the Pop Up on Facebook has been viewed over 640,000 times worldwide!
With many amazing wow moments including:
- A three year old child enjoyed had his first ever laugh on the trampolines.
- One child took 5 steps in her frame for the first time after coming to the Pop Up.
- A young man was able to concentrate in a lesson for 50 minutes when his previous
record was 15 minutes after coming to the Pop Up.
- A little girl slept through the night for the first time after the Pop Up.
- A young man joined a gym after coming to the Pop Up and gaining the confidence that he could do it.
And much, much more!
One parent said ‘there is a difference between children being tolerated and celebrated. Here our children are definitely celebrated’
Please keep an eye on our website, our social media pages and sign up to our newsletter to be kept up to date with all Pop Up and Gympanzees news and to be the first to hear about the next Pop Up.