Inspire | Spring 2019

The Children's Trust Blogger

Welcome to inspire

Amanda Boyd, A member of the Donor Care Team at The Children's Trust
We’ve been busy with lots of different activities at The Children’s Trust, and I want to say a huge “thank you” for making the successes you read about in inspire possible. The children who come to us often have problems walking, talking and doing things for themselves. Many struggle with fatigue and have difficulty concentrating. Your support means our expert team of nurses, therapists, doctors and other specialists are here to help children with brain injury and neurodisabiliy. It’s your generosity that enables us to run the life-changing therapy sessions you can read about below. And it’s your support that helps children take their first steps on the road to recovery. Warmest wishes Amanda Boyd
Senior Supporter Care Coordinator
We’ve also been hard at work planning an extra special ‘Supporter Bonus Draw’ for new players in our £1,000 Weekly Lottery. If you don’t play already, sign up before 1st March for your chance to win a fabulous Marks and Spencer’s shopping voucher.


Emilie's story

Emilie 'In one physiotherapy session Emilie practised her walking by delivering cards to staff. '
In one physiotherapy session Emilie practised her walking by delivering cards to staff.
Emilie was 16 years old and loved to dance and paint before she had surgery for a brain stem tumour in 2018. Emilie’s doctors successfully removed the tumour, but she was left unable to walk, talk and struggled to do things on her own. Emilie was in a wheelchair when she first came to The Children’s Trust and needed a frame to walk even very short distances. She struggled with her balance and standing up for more than a minute made her feel dizzy. Getting up from the floor on her own was impossible. But Emilie was determined to start walking by herself again. And with the support of our team, including her physiotherapist Natasha, it wasn’t long before she achieved her goal. Emilie said: “I did lots of reaching and twisting for darts, balls and beanbags in my physiotherapy sessions. This helped me improve my balance and stay upright when I was walking.” Natasha made sure that Emilie got the most out of her therapy by creating fun activities that helped strengthen Emilie’s muscles. “Dancing was really important to Emilie,” explained Natasha. “So we used the Nintendo Wii ‘Just Dance’ games to help motivate her. She would do the steps whilst using the parallel bars.” By the time Emilie left us she had made amazing progress. She could stand up for half an hour and had taken her first unaided steps. She was able to use a specially adapted bicycle and even pull herself up off the floor. The improvement in her mobility was remarkable. Click here if you would like to make a donation to support children with brain injury like Emilie

Superstar supporter

Bella on a run for The Children's Trust
Bella (pictured right, during one of her runs) had difficulties walking and talking when she came to us following treatment for a brain tumour in 2016. After four months of rehabilitation Bella went home. And to say thank you for the support we’d given her, she started doing fundraising challenges like fun runs with her friends and family. Bella’s aunty even nominated us as Proctor and Gamble’s Charity of the Year and secured a huge gift of £3,500. In total Bella has helped raise over £12,650. What a star!
Why not take on your own challenge? to find out more.

The music keeps coming from CedarSuperSound

Eleanor uses a tablet to create sounds as part of the CedarSuperSounds group at The Children's Trust school
Eight students (including Eleanor, pictured right using a tablet to create sounds) at The Children’s Trust School released yet another fantastic music single in December. The group, known as CedarSuperSound, is involved in every step of the musical process. Band members pick lyrics for their songs using a spin wheel and are given specially adapted instruments to learn and play. These include tablets programmed as keyboards so students can play them using their chins, noses or other body parts. You can find out more about CedarSuperSound, listen to their singles and watch behind-the-scenes footage of the band in action by visiting our YouTube channel. Make sure you check them out!

Jadae’s story by Caroline, Jadae’s mum

20 September 2015 is a date I’ll never forget. It’s the day my daughter, Jadae, was hit by a car and left with a severe brain injury. She was just seven years old. In hospital Jadae was put into coma. She was surrounded by monitors and machines and for weeks she lay unresponsive. I was told she wouldn’t improve. But doctors underestimated my little girl.
Jadaeleigh's leaving party at The Children's Trust
Jadae having fun at a party at The Children's Trust
Jadae began showing small signs of response about three months after the accident. She could lift her head off the pillow to kiss her favourite teddy bear. But she still wasn’t talking. She couldn’t sit up on her own, stand, walk or feed herself. Those things all seemed impossible. Then we went to stay at The Children’s Trust. Jadae started to improve within days of us getting there. She received support from so many amazing people including nurses, physiotherapists, speech and language therapists and others. And just four weeks after we arrived Jadae spoke for the first time in months. I cried with happiness. Jadae loved the therapy sessions at The Children’s Trust. Her favourite game was the ‘shopping game’ where she had to find all the items on a shopping list. This was brilliant because not only did Jadae have fun, but she also got to practice her walking, reaching, grabbing and coordination. The Glitter Group, a musical theatre club which encourages children to dance and sing, was also a massive hit and helped Jadae become more mobile and confident. She was in a wheelchair but that didn’t stop her making up dance routines with the other girls. And there wasn’t a dry eye in the house when she sang ‘It’s a Hard Knock Life’ in front of everyone. Jadae left The Children’s Trust after nine months and now, two years on from that, she is back at school. She can walk, talk and even ride a bike on her own. I’m so proud of her.
Why fun is so important
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Fun activities make a huge difference to children undergoing rehabilitation. They help children settle in, come out of their shells and grow in confidence. Playing also helps children develop new skills and practice the ones they’ve learned in therapy sessions without them realising it. Through play and having fun children often make rapid progress.

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