Kausar was worried about her two-year-old son Daniyal. But she shrugged it off, telling herself there was lots going on
Things were busy for the family. Kauser and her husband had recently moved house in Buckinghamshire. Even more significantly, Daniyal had just become big brother to twin girls, Isla and Kinza.
"When the twins were born, Daniyal saw we’d wake up in the night to feed them and he’d wake up too," says Kausar. "He’d scream for an hour – we worried the neighbours would complain."
Daniyal didn’t like noise, he didn’t maintain eye contact, he wouldn’t smile. His speech regressed, too.Kauser, Daniyal's mum
Kausar urgently needed help, but leaving the house was a big challenge. Daniyal wasn’t yet walking - "I felt like I had triplets," says Kausar.
Asking for help
Kausar asked Action for Children for support. Recognising how hard it would be for Kausar and her three children to come to us, we arranged to visit her at home.
As well as looking at ways to support Daniyal, we encouraged Kausar to come along to Stay and Play sessions at our children’s centre.
We knew she found getting out with the children difficult, so we made a plan. Kausar would call us as she left the house and we would meet her in the car park and help her get the children out of the car and into the centre.
Our early intervention helped lead to Daniyal being diagnosed with autism and selective mutism. At around the same time, Kausar noticed that Isla and Kinza weren’t reaching their developmental milestones. They were later diagnosed with global development delay.
"Emotionally it was a lot to take," says Kausar. "At times I felt really depressed. Getting out to those Action for Children sessions helped normalise things. We really benefited from that."
Now Kausar and her family are benefiting from our short break service. Daniyal, Kinza and Isla attend half-day sessions with Action for Children every fortnight.
These sessions give Kauser a few crucial hours to catch up with household chores and shopping. Without this kind of support from Action for Children, Kausar believes she may have sunk further into depression.
Instead, Kausar describes herself as a "mum taxi", driving her children from nursery to sports groups to the Action for Children sessions, making sure they benefit from the same social interactions and life experiences as any other pre-schooler.
We started attending a singing group which became the highlight of our week. The Action for Children support workers feel like family.
She may soon have another activity to squeeze into the diary. Daniyal loved taking part in a ballet class recently, so Kausar is hoping to make it a regular event. She hopes these activities will ease Daniyal’s transition into primary school.
The twins are making strides too. While adventurous Isla shows off her motor skills on the slide in the park, Kinza is delighting her parents with her first words.
Action for Children’s support has meant a lot to Kausar and her family. "I don’t think I’d have been able to cope without Action for Children," she says. "They are always there for us – they do a wonderful job."