Cheryl Lingard hopes to open a place for autstics like her son

Victoria mom hopes to open safe place for autistic kids

Support garnered to open Safe Place for Our Unique Kids

Frustrated with the lack of support she’s received for her son Justin, 18, Cheryl Lingard is taking matters into her own hands, and hopes to open a place for other autistic children – and their parents – to find respite.

Lingard has garnered support from other families in her goal to open Safe Place for Our Unique Kids, but she still needs a physical space to host it.

“An old house, a place in need of some TLC, would be best,” Lingard said.

“The kids could learn to cook in the kitchen, learn how to garden in the backyard and be able to hang out with their own kind without having to worry about being picked on. A lot of these kids have to live most of their social life online, because in real life they’re bullied so often.”

Though she hasn’t received any offers for a house, Lingard said that several construction workers have volunteered to fix it up when she does, and an electronics store has offered to donate computers for the kids.

Lingard plans for the home to be open for parents to drop their children off whenever needed, while other parents volunteer to supervise, as options for special needs kids in Victoria are limited and expensive.

Lingard said that the $6,000 annual allowance she receives to cover Justin’s special needs hasn’t changed over the past 18 years, but it could go a lot further if she had an option like this.

“There’s nothing out here for these kids to get them motivated, to give them purpose in life,” she said. “The goodwill used to be able to do that, but with the cutbacks the special needs kids are falling through the cracks.”

Lingard said that other parents she’s spoken to are fully behind the idea, and Justin, who mentors younger autistics, is enthusiastic as well.

“He’s already coming up with ideas on stuff they can do with the little ones,” she said.

Lingard is still seeking donations for the Safe Place for Our Unique Kids project and can be reached at 250-590-9071.

reporter@vicnews.com

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

West Shore woman’s dog found in Colwood more than two weeks after going missing

Isla went missing on March 10 and was found 17 days later

Saanich police ticket two speeders before 9 a.m., Saturday

Officers still actively enforcing road safety amid COVID-19 pandemic

PHOTOS: Painted fence in Langford shows thanks for essential workers amid COVID-19

Community members finding unique ways to show their appreciation

Duncan man asks community to donate RVs to essential workers in need of quarantine

Ryan Oakley creates a Facebook group to help coordinate the effort

Antibody tests could be the next step in fighting COVID-19, Island doctor says

The blood test could show if a person is recovering or has recovered from the virus

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

COVID-19: A message from the publisher

We will be making some changes to our print editions during these unprecedented times

B.C. Ferries passengers staying away, as asked, during COVID-19 pandemic

Ferry corporation says ridership down 70-80 per cent over the last week and a half

Sewers stitch masks to free up supplies for front-line health-care workers

“We have little old ladies sewing up a storm,” said Joan Davis

Experts weigh in on best handling of groceries during COVID-19 pandemic

Study suggests the virus can live for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to three days on plastic

COVID-19 world update: Enforceable quarantine in NYC?; France orders 1 billion masks

Spain warns EU’s future at stake; New York governor calls Trump’s idea ‘federal declaration of war

B.C. COVID-19 cases rise 92 to 884, one more death, 81 in care

Outbreak action underway in 12 long-term care homes

B.C. veterinarians want to smooth the fur of COVID-19-worried pet owners

Vets expect to continue giving your fur buddies the help they need while social distancing

B.C. VIEWS: Small businesses need our help

Just as integral in neighbourhoods in Vancouver and Surrey as they are in Prince George or Kelowna

Most Read