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Letter to all current applicants


Dear Parent/Carer

We are writing to inform you that there is now  a sensory processing difficulties (SPD)  pilot project run by Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group and in partnership with ADDvanced Solutions Community Network.

This project has been developed in collaboration with the Neurodevelopmental Pathway. It is a pilot service for children whose difficulty in processing sensory information is having a significant impact on their daily functioning. It will run from November 2014 – November 2015.
This service will offer a range of intervention that is dependent on each child’s individual need and MAY include:

Awareness raising for parents and professionals
Advice and recommendations
Community networking and support
Clinical assessment
Therapy programmes
Sensory-motor strategies
Sensory Integration Therapy from qualified Occupational Therapists

With the development of this new project The Isabella Trust have reviewed their application process and all current applicants and future applicants  are now required to initially access the SPD Pilot Project .

Referral to the SPD Pilot Project is via the following:

Neurodevelopmental pathway
Professional referral
Self referral at designated ADDvanced Solutions drop-in sessions where a trained Occupational Therapist is present.  Dates  and venue for the designated drop-in sessions are:

Tuesday 6th January 15, 12-45 until 3pm at Mere Lane Neighbourhood centre.

Tuesday 24th February 15, 12.45-3pm at Townsend Lane Health Centre.

For further information regarding the SPD Pilot, contact the Children’s Occupational Therapy duty officer on: 0151 225 6062 or ADDvanced Solutions on: 0151 486 1788

Should your referral for a sensory service via the SPD Pilot Project be unsuccessful we at The Isabella Trust will review your current application.

Please Note:  All applications will not be considered unless you have tried to access the SPD Pilot Project firstly.

The Isabella Trust was set up in November 2013 due to a lack of services supporting children and young people with SPD, the aim of the trust was to provide access to sensory assessments for children with SPD difficulties.  It is fantastic news that Liverpool has recognised the gap in services for Children with SPD and is piloting this project..

The Isabella Trust will continue to provide services for children with SPD but we would not want to duplicate a service that has already been offered to a family or is available through Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group . We would only offer a sensory assessment once the applicant has already explored support from the SPD pilot.

We would strongly advise parent to attend one of the designated  ADDvanced Solutions drop-in sessions where they can make a direct referral to access the services on offer by the SPD pilot.

If you would like to discuss this further please telephone myself on 0151 792 8178

Yours Sincerely

Tracy Bowyer

Service Manger

We will keep you updated with any further developments as and when we become aware.


There are two types of assessments available, a full sensory assessment and a clinic assessment.

As the Isabella Trust has limited funding, and is unable to help all families caring for a Child With Sensory Processing Disorder we use our own disability criteria to determine whether a child is eligible.

You do not need to wait for a diagnosis for your child to make an application for a grant if you think your child may meet the criteria below. Disability Living Allowance awards are not an indicator that a child would be eligible for a Sensory Assessment as we use our own disability criteria.

To meet the Isabella Trust’s disability criteria, children and young people must have Sensory Processing Difficulties.

There must be evidence that the child or young person’s additional needs impact on a family’s choices and their opportunity to enjoy ordinary life. The degree of planning and support required to meet their needs must also be much greater than that usually required to meet the needs of children and young people.


They must require a high level of support in three or more of the following areas:

•             The physical environment

•             Education

•             Communication

•             Access to social activities

•             Personal care, supervision and vigilance

•             Specialist resources, including Information and Communications Technology, required

If you can say ‘yes‘ to the following,  Isabella Trust may be able to help you and your family:

•The child resides within the  Liverpool Local Authority boundaries.

•I have current legal residency in the UK and have lived in the UK for the last 6 months, and I am eligible to work and apply for public funds

•I am a parent or carer of a child or young person aged 17 or under with Sensory Processing Difficulties who lives at home.

•I am eligible for, and I can send evidence of one of the following: Universal Credit, Child Tax Credit, Working Tax Credit, Job Seekers, Income Support, Incapacity Benefit, Employment Support Allowance, Housing benefit, Pension Credit.

•I have an annual household income of less than £26,000 excluding Disability Living Allowance

•I can provide two references from an Occupational therapist and another  professional  who currently works with my child or young person .

To make an application please complete the online application form. Alternatively print and post a completed form to The Isabella Trust. We will ask you to provide us with information regarding your income.

If the application is successful funding will be available up to 80% of the cost of the assessment.

Applications are discussed  three times per year as follows:

applications received between:

  •  12th November and 11th March are discussed beginning of April
  •  12th March and 11th July are discussed beginning of August
  • 12th July and 11th November are discussed beginning of December



The Isabella Trust work closely with Shine Therapy who complete all sensory assessments  organised by The Isabella Trust.

Shine Therapy are an established team of independent Occupational Therapists, Speech & Language Therapists and Physiotherapists working within the North-West of England. Shine Therapy Services are only too aware how sensory processing difficulties can affect a child’s ability to successfully access learning, play, social situations and ability to interact and communicate with others effectively. The staff have the most up to date qualifications and training, and have very high standards of practice, particularly within the area of Sensory Integration Assessment and Intervention.


Frequently Asked Questions

How long will it take before I am contacted?

Applications are discussed three times per year in April, August and November.  Following the meeting in which your application is discussed you will be contacted within two weeks  to inform you of the outcome.  Please note that all supporting documentation must be provided before a decision can be made. For successful applications it currently takes approximately 8 months from the initial application until the assessment appointment.

Is there a limit on how much you’ll pay?

We will fund up to 80% of the cost of the assessment so you will need to contribute 20% yourself.

Can we use any company or Occupational Therapist to complete the sensory assessment?

No, all sensory assessments funded by The Isabella Trust are completed by Shine Therapy services whom we have a close working relationship.

Another charity has said that they will pay half of the cost of the assessment; can I apply to The Isabella Trust for the rest?

If you have part of the funding in place then you can apply to us for the rest however we would need written confirmation that the rest of the funding is available.

If I pay for a sensory assessment will you reimburse me?

No, The Isabella Trust does not reimburse you for money you have spent. We pay Shine Therapy Services directly following the completion of the assessment.

I am self employed, what financial information do you need me to send?

We need you to provide us with details of your income and expenditure for the last financial year.

What do the references need to say?

Both references must confirm:

Your child’s full name.

How they know your child.

Details of diagnosis and/or difficulties

Who can write the references?
One of the references must be written by an Occupational Therapist.  The other reference can also be from a medical practitioner but it doesn’t have to be. It just needs to be written by a professional who works with your child such as their teacher, social worker or speech therapist.

Please fill in our form so we can assess your situation