DADS of children with disabilities and life-limiting illnesses can take time off and have some fun with others like them at a new support group.

Haven House Children’s Hospice in Woodford Green offers all kinds of support for the families of the youngsters it looks after.

Its parent coffee mornings and dedicated sibling service make sure the whole family is cared for.

But after some recent feedback Haven House has decided to launch a new group especially for dads.

Meeting on the first Saturday of every month at 11am, the group allows fathers to share their experiences of caring for their disabled children and also gives them the chance to let their hair down.

Haven House’s family and community manager Judi Porter said: “For many years we have run a successful coffee morning group for parents where they have been able to share their experiences, develop friendships and enjoy spending time together.

“Our coffee mornings help tackle the isolation experienced by mums, but it can be just as isolating for dads who may feel unable to share their thoughts and feelings with their work colleagues, friends and family.

“Since launching our Dads’ Group, we have been delighted by the number of dads who have expressed an interest in being part of the group and several dads in the group have already formed friendships.”

Ilford-based Aasam and Mariam Alim have been coming to Haven House with their daughter Aiza since 2006.

Her rare metabolic disorder means she needs constant care, which her mum and dad often need help with.

After his wife spent many a coffee morning at Haven House, Aasam decided to help set up the dads group, which he says he really enjoys.

He said: “The dads’ group is really all about sharing experiences and trying to bring them out while having fun. It’s a great way to meet other dads in similar situations.”

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