Support for people with learning disabilities

This page offers a list of support and information services for people with learning disabilities.

About With Friends

About With Friends offers support to anyone from the age of 9 and above. They provide such support like activities and respite opportunities to supported living and work skills.

They also provide bespoke programmes to target precise needs. Adult services aim to build friendships, support integration into a community and to help build confidence in everyday life.

Affinity Trust

The Affinity Trust is a national organisation with a Norfolk branch.

Affinity Trust aim to support people to live as independently as possible, including people with complex needs including autism, mental health needs, and profound and multiple learning disabilities.

Their work includes enabling people to live in their own homes, giving opportunities to enjoy community-based activities, or supporting people into work.

Affinity Trust support people with a range of needs, from those who need just a few hours a week to people who require round-the-clock support.

ASD Helping Hands

ASD Helping Hands offers a wide variety of personal support packages for families, children and young people affected by the Autistic Spectrum Condition.

ASD Helping Hands aim to offer guidance, practical advice and support whether you are personally affected or you are an associated family member, carer, friend or professional. ASD Helping Hands actively champion the rights of all people affected by an ASD and aim to make a positive difference to their lives while delivering a service that is accessible, reliable and trustworthy.


Social, leisure and learning opportunities for people with disabilities.

The BUILD Charity aim to support and co-ordinate opportunities so that people with disabilities can access, and enjoy, the kind of social life that most of us take for granted.

The Down's Syndrome Association (DSA)

The Down’s Syndrome Association is a national organisation, committed to improving quality of life for people who have Down’s Syndrome, promoting their right to be included on a full and equal basis with others. The DSA’s website has information, advice and resources about living with and supporting someone with Down’s Syndrome.

Little Miracles

Little Miracles is registered charity that supports families that have children with additional needs, disabilities and life-limiting conditions from birth to 25 years.

Little Miracles provide a non-judgemental environment where their holistic approach to supports the needs of the whole family. They specialise in providing advice, guidance, support, activities, training and safe places to any family that has a child with an additional need, disability or life-limiting condition.


Mencap has branches in parts of Norfolk. The charity aims to change people’s attitude to learning disabilities and improve the quality of life of people with a learning disability and their families.

Mid Norfolk MENCAP (serving Mid, North and South Norfolk)

Musical Keys

Musical Keys is a charity which provides music and arts activities for people with additional needs in Norfolk and the surrounding area.

Musical Keys aim to make music accessible to everyone and to celebrate all forms of self-expression.

They run groups and projects which enable participants to meaningfully take part in, and benefit from, music and creativity, where self-expression can thrive.


Nansa aims to be a catalyst for real change, across the region, for those living with, or caring for others with, special educational needs and/or disabilities.

Norfolk Learning Disability Partnership

The Learning Disability Partnership are a group of people who live or work in Norfolk and want to make the lives of people with Learning Disabilites better.

Members of the board are:

  • People with learning disabilities
  • Family carers of people with learning disabilities
  • People who work for Norfolk County Council, the NHS and other organisations such as Charities
  • People who decide how to spend the money for learning disability services in Norfolk

Norfolk Learning Disability Service

The Norfolk Learning Disability Service supports adults aged 18+ who have been diagnosed with a learning disability, autism or both. They provide a range of support services to people with learning disabilities: 

  • Communication
  • Eating and drinking
  • Accommodation
  • Behaviour and mental health
  • Emotional wellbeing
  • Diagnostic assessments
  • Epilepsy
  • Employment and volunteering
  • Carers’ assessments
  • Sexual health
  • Keeping safe and risk management
  • Support at home
  • Medication
  • Mobility and posture
  • Day activities

If you need an assessment from the Norfolk Learning Disability Service you should contact the Social Care Community Engagement (SCCE) on 0344 800 8020, who will help you with the assessment process.


Opening Doors

Opening Doors is ran by people with learning disabilities and offers training for people with learning disabilities.


  • How to get the support you need
  • Tenancy training – having your own home
  • Disability Awareness and visual awareness
  • Personal budgets
  • Why and how to vote
  • Knowing your rights
  • Reporting hate crime and keeping safe
As well as training for carers and families, Opening Doors also make information easier to understand and read with their Easy Read service.

Opening Doors also has a Cromer office.

Pets As Therapy

Pets As Therapy (PAT) is a national charity that enhances the health and wellbeing of thousands of people in communities across the UK. PAT strive to ensure that everyone, no matter their circumstances, has access to the companionship of an animal.

Volunteers and their temperament-assessed pets visit establishments such as care homes, hospitals, hospices, schools and prisons, and bring smiles to many faces. People of all ages get the chance to chat to someone — and stroke a friendly dog or cat.

SEND Norfolk

SEND Norfolk is for anyone in the life of a child or young person aged 0-25 who has a special educational need and/or disability (SEND) in Norfolk.

The website can help you:

  • Find information on support in education
  • Learn about special needs services that can help children, young people and their families
  • Find a support network – parents, groups and organisations
  • Get guidance and advice about how to help a young person plan their adult life

Sunbeams Play

Sunbeams Play is a registered charity which provides a fun, safe and caring environment for children and young people with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder to thrive.