All school children benefit from experiences gained on trips out or residential visits.
But for many children with disability, disadvantage or special needs, these excursions are an essential part of their education and personal development.
It is not easy for schools and organisations catering for children with special needs to arrange trips out using public transport. The logistics of timetables, costs and the basic lack of suitable facilities for children with disabilities combine to make trips a real headache for teachers and carers.
When a school is given its own Sunshine Coach all these obstacles disappear. Suddenly it’s possible to take children in comfort and safety to experience new places, take part in sport and leisure pursuits, visit interesting and historical places, access the core curriculum at other schools or just have a great day out.
In particular it makes it possible for the children to regularly integrate more into the local community where they can learn valuable communication and life skills that most people take for granted. The increased self esteem and confidence that comes from doing something as simple as buying a drink and a snack in a cafe is hard to imagine but teachers will tell you they see the difference in the classroom.
When children have new experiences there’s more to share and talk about so social and communication skills improve. Getting on with each other as a group is another valuable life skill that regular trips on a Sunshine Coach help to develop.
Over 5,350 Sunshine Coaches have been provided by Variety
Thanks to our many personal and corporate sponsors, our famous Sunshine Coaches have become a common sight on Britain’s roads, ferrying eager children to their next destination.
A Sunshine Coach is a passport to a world of new experiences
- 97% of Coaches are used many times a week and often several times a day.
- 86% of the children they carry have physical, sensory or learning disabilities.
- 71% of coach use is for educational, recreational and residential trips.
What having a Variety Sunshine Coach means for a school
The Sunshine Coaches makes a huge difference to the lives of all our students. They are used every day and without them the students would not be able to access the varied activities that these buses take them to.
Approximately 30% of the students in school receive Free School Meals, others come from very poor homes, often living in very difficult financial circumstances which deprive them of many experiences that most children take for granted.
The use of our Sunshine Coaches ensures that the students are able to enjoy experiences that are not available to them in their everyday lives and these provide an enrichment of their education.
Shaun Jukes, Head Teacher
Sir Tom Finney Community High School