Find support, breathe, exhale
‘Find support, take a breath and exhale’ is the motto of a new trust aiming to help families from the Wellington area do just that.
Paul Latham said the challenges facing parents and families of special needs children was something the community didn’t often see.
‘‘I’m not an expert, but in my humble opinion parents with special needs children become more and more insular.’’
Last year Latham and wife Mandy announced their plan to launch the Ahuru Mowai Charitable Trust to provide support and respite for children with special needs.
Now with new trustee Carla Gardiner on board and their sight firmly set on a property, the trust will be launched on August 10.
‘‘We’re looking forward to the challenge because we think it has real significance to the community, it will be bigger than us and bigger than Porirua,’’ Paul Latham said.
Ahuru Mowai means sheltered haven or safe place and Latham said it’s exactly what they wanted to provide to families from Wellington to Kapiti.
‘‘We want to make spaces and places that multiple people can use at one time and that families can spend time together in a safe place,’’he said.
For families like his own even finding a picnic location for a family gathering could be next to impossible.
His son Isaac was diagnosed in 2003 with severe autism, ADHD and dyspraxia and was scared of dogs, fascinated by water and enjoyed running away from his parents.
‘‘We’ve packed up picnics and driven to 3 or 4 places to try and find somewhere suitable but ended up having a picnic in the lounge at home.
‘‘People should be able to take their kids to a park or for a ride on a train, but we want to give them some options for the days where they might not be feeling so brave.’’
‘‘We’re doing it because we’ve seen the need for it. We don’t like to say ‘what if’, but something like this would have meant we had places to go as a family.’’
Ahuru Mowai Trust
The trustwill be officially launched on August 10 at the Lighthouse Cinema in Pauatahanui, contact email@example.com or see their Facebook page facebook.com/ ahurumowaitrust.
Mandy Latham and son Isaac enjoy some family time together.