About Us

Dream The Change is a Community Interest Company that is an enlightened, interconnected, empowered hub for families who have children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), from diverse backgrounds, especially from Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) groups.

In partnership, we aim act as one voice to bridge the gap between families and service providers in Essex, and surrounding areas, in order to influence them and decision-makers to improve support and services available and the quality of life for these families and their children.
We’re fully aware of the ethnic, cultural and linguistic barriers that minority families can face. We endeavour to gather your opinion in order to reach out on your behalf to local authorities and decision-makers to share your views and experiences, while enhancing your support network and working towards a brighter future.
To help us realise our dream for change, we organise activities for Colchester and North Essex families who have children with SEND, aged 5-12 years-of-age, of diverse ethnic, national, cultural and linguistic background.  Have a look at what we offer

We organise parent seminars, training days, and workshops for parents/carers of SEND children, build a parent support group and arrange social events for the families and their children, like after school clubs and trips to Colchester Zoo, Jump Street or Jimmy’s Farm.
We also provide access to cul­tur­ally and lin­guis­ti­cally appro­pri­ate infor­ma­tion and resources.
group of children completing an arts and crafts activity


Our Vision

We started Dream The Change CIC because we, like you, are parents of children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and we know the challenges you can face striving to find the right support for your child and your household. We believe that together we can unite to influence changes for the better for all concerned while attracting the right help and support. 
Being a parent or carer of a child with special educational needs or a disability  (SEND) takes a lot of energy, passion and devotion. We know from our own experiences that these three elements are the keys to success in achieving our vision; they are also great assets for the welfare and development of your child. 

Our Mission

At Dream The Change, we, like you, have a dream and we have an unshakable belief that together we can make it happen. Our dream is to make a positive change in your lives, as families of children with SEND.
We appreciate that caring for a child or children with SEND isn’t easy and may have a big influence on some of your life choices, but we are here for you, to help you celebrate your achievements and your child’s development. 
Dream The Change’s mission is to help you find the right skills, resources and support that you and your child/ren need in order to provide a caring environment to help your child/ren flourish and achieve all they are capable of. Together we’ll celebrate each other’s achievements as your surrogate family.

Our Ethos

While respecting each other’s views and differences, we aim to work together, using individual skills and resources to enhance the lives of everyone involved by uniting to share our concerns in order to influence the decision-makers and generate positive provision for children with SEND and their families or carers. The ethos of our services is that everyone should be respected and appreciated, while central to our brand are the core values are equality and diversity.     
organised activity at the local zoo

What Makes Us Unique

There is a wide range of services available for families of children with SEND, but we, at Dream the Change, recognise that there are families that are sometimes left behind and do not have access to the full support they deserve due to ethnic, language and cultural barriers. 
For this reason, our aim is to reach those families and stand by their side to help every child with SEND flourish and achieve all they are capable of, while they enjoy life’s experiences. As our members belong to a diverse community and come from different cultural and ethnic backgrounds, we are often able to provide you with a translator who can accompany you during our activities or when you’re trying to access local authority services.
As we recognise the extra challenges you may face due to language and cultural barriers, we can help you make your voice heard when you communicate with the local authorities. 

Staff and Trustees

Meet our Trustees at Dream The Change CIC.
Jemal Allabayeva co-founder and director of Dream the Change

Jemal Allabayeva, MA

Co-Founder, Director

Jemal’s role as a Co-Founder and Director is to coordinate the work of the Community Interest Company “Dream The Change”. Her educational background includes MA in the Theory and Practice of Human Rights (specialist courses in Children’s Rights and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights), BA Pedagogy and Philology, Level 3 Award in Education by the International Education Group (TiEGr),  Level 2 in Children Mental Health Training. Jemal is a Family Champion at Essex Family Forum and an Ambassador at the Steering Team of the Community Interest Company “African Families in the UK”.
Rachel Walton, company secretary at Dream the Change

Rachel Walton

Company Secretary

Rachel Walton is a trainer and with a strong background in community development, in 2018 was recognized by the Queen for her notable contribution in her own community.  Rachel has been instrumental in forming direct links with BAME groups and individuals. Her work through training, development, capacity building aims to bridge the gap between under represented BAME groups and access to public services. Rachel is currently working with a special needs school in exploring how to involve the children in the wider community activities as well as develop tools/pillars that would help the parents grow stronger & more resilient, become their own experts by researching on therapies that connect with their roots and most of all be an advocate for their own children.
Dr Zakariya Absi, non-executive director at Dream the Change

Dr Zakariya Absi

Non-Executive Director

Having a daughter with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), Zakariya aspires to make her life experience, and those of families connected with Dream The Change CIC, the best they can be. He believes that children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) need special parents and carers and his mission is to reach those special parents and make their experience special and enjoyable in every aspect.

Zakariya gives advice to parents and carers on the possible support Dream The Change can offer and communicate with families and helps them understand the kind of support they need and what is available for them.
Paulina Rangel, trustee at Dream the Change

Paulina Rangel


Paulina is a creative and versatile person, she is from Venezuela, but has raised her family in the U.K. Before being a mum, she used to work in Media, then her life changed, and she committed to support her son’s special needs by working towards understanding autism. Now she works as a specialist teacher and is a committee member and supporter of Stepping Stones Play and Learn Group in Colchester. She feels honoured to sharing her experiences with other families from Dream the Change and try to make a difference in their lives.