Innovative online service wins top industry award

sendirect-logoA website which brings together specialist activities, support and services for families with children with additional needs has won a second digital award in three months.

SENDirect – an online service led by the charity Contact a Family – received the Digital Impact award for Best Development of proprietary social media platforms, along with the project’s developers Connect. The award was presented at a ceremony in London last night.

SENDirect was also highly commended in the Best NGO/Not for Profit/Charity website category at the Digital Impact Awards, which set the industry-wide benchmark in digital stakeholder engagement and honour the best corporate digital communications work across Europe.

In July this year SENDirect was awarded the Big Chip Award for the best Not-For-Profit project. And in September it was a finalist in the Best Partnership Award at the Third Sector Awards.

Elizabeth Archer, SENDirect’s Project Director, said she was thrilled for her team and the digital team from Connect that the project has received so much recognition in its first few months of being launched.

“This is a great achievement and reflects the amazing input and commitment from everyone involved with SENDirect over the past few years,” said Elizabeth. “We would like to say a massive thank you to all of our consortium members for their guidance and support, the Department for Education for its ongoing funding, and especially to every provider and family who helped us develop and improve SENDirect.”

SENDirect is a unique service which brings together accessible activities, support and services on one website for families with disabled children, who often otherwise face major challenges accessing the right care and support.

It is the result of a collaboration between nine charities known as The SEND Consortium. They are Contact a Family (Lead Partner), Ambitious about Autism, Dyslexia Action, Family Fund, ICAN, KIDS, Mencap, National Autistic Society & Scope.

On presenting the award, the Digital Impact judges said: “SENDirect is a revolutionary platform that supports the parents and carers of children with disabilities and special educational needs by connecting them with services that can help. Designed to create a self-supporting community of parents and carers, the platform allows users to research and compare local services, communicate, review and negotiate on provision and even make instant payments for goods and services.”

Check out the SENDirect website at

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