Newlife Foundation, the charity for disabled and terminally ill children across the UK, will be at the Kidz In The Middle exhibition on Thursday, March 21st, to give free help and advice to parents, carers and health professionals alike.
Kidz in the Middle is at the Ricoh Arena, in Coventry, and is a free event catering for the overwhelming demand for support and guidance from hard-hit families of disabled youngsters. Newlife’s representatives including lead nurse Karen Dobson, will be on hand on stand E42 to outline support, equipment and funding.
As the Paralympic legacy seems to be fading, more and more families are turning to Newlife for help as cutbacks hit all areas. The charity believes that around a quarter of a million children in the UK are living without the specialist equipment they need.
Its national Nurse helpline – 0800 902 0095 – is receiving more calls than ever before, and there are huge numbers of hits on the charity’s website, www.newlifecharity.co.uk
To date it has funded more than £8.2 million of this equipment for more than 5,400 children through its equipment grants scheme, which was set up as a direct result of families voicing their concerns about difficulties in accessing equipment.
These are not luxury items, but pieces of equipment designed to facilitate everyday life; wheelchairs to enable youngsters to access mainstream schools, sleep systems to help delay or event prevent invasive surgery, portable hoists to allow children to take part in sporting activities, communication aids so children can tell their families when they are in pain – the list goes on.
Cutbacks have meant councils and health providers have had to reduce service provision across the board – put simply, if Newlife can’t provide the funds for equipment the children will simply go without.
Newlife has grown from helping a handful of children to now becoming an invaluable source of support for thousands of families across the UK. It has also invested £13 million into pioneering medical research in the UK and is constantly developing to meet spiralling needs. In addition, the charity is actively involved in campaigning at all levels, you’re your local town hall to Westminster to ensure disabled children and their families get a fairer deal.
Also at the Kidz in the Middle Exhibition will be an inclusive sports zone where a variety of activities will be demonstrated including volleyball and tennis, and there will also be an accessible playground, soft play area and a sensory pod to show.