For 2014/15 we funded these six projects -
Support for the Wellchild “Helping Hands” project which carries out vital home improvement in the homes of seriously ill and disabled children. Well Child funds specially trained nurses who provide specific care for children with complex conditions, often enabling them to live at home with their families and also providing these families with a vital support network. The families are very often unable to adapt their homes in the ways that are necessary to provide a safe and nurturing environment for their children, the “Helping Hands” initiative makes this possible. Information and photos of some of the most recent "Helping Hands" projects are here.
A new “Speak Out” project with Blue Elephant Theatre. This new project will build on previous work that we supported in 2013, working with young people and schools to look at the issues young people are commonly facing coping with mental health and emotional challenges. The new “Speak Easy” project will be developed by a referred group of young people and will tour schools looking at the ways in which children and young people can learn to express their own emotional issues and concerns, as well as supporting others more effectively in this area. The end result will be a “dictionary” created by young people for young people specifically relating to this area that can then be used as a resource and a basis for further work and support. You can read all about our 2013 project here.
A funding contribution for the next phase of clinical research for Sohana Research Fund. The goal of Sohana Research Fund is to find effective treatments and ultimately a cure for children suffering with Epidermolysis Bullosa, a serious and life shortening skin condition that leads to blistering, progressive deformity and malignant skin cancer. This will be the second phase of research in this important area. The professors involved believe this vital research may also result in progress that will support development in treatment of other serious genetic skin conditions and skin cancer.
Part funding for a bridging project to help new young care leavers transition into the next stage of their lives, run by The Big House. The Big House Theatre Company is a charity exclusively dedicated to providing support for this often marginalised group of young people. Young care leavers frequently experience much hardship in adjusting to adult life, usually with minimal support. The Big House works with these young people using a combination of drama therapy and life skills training to help equip them for the next stage of their lives. The “Open House Project” works with 15 care leavers in an intensive 12 week course followed by a year’s one to one mentoring programme.
A new light delivery vehicle for the Programme Coordinator and Community Health Workers supporting children with HIV in South Africa's Eastern Cape Province, working for the One to One Children’s Fund project there. There are a high proportion of children living with HIV in rural areas in the Eastern Cape Province who are hard to reach, many of whom are stopping vital HIV treatment and not gaining access to proper care. With a new fully equipped vehicle the team can access these most vulnerable children and give them the support they need as well as assess the need for further referrals in terms of child protection, counselling and vital nutrition support. You can read more about One to One Children's Fund and their project in Kosovo that we supported in 2013, here.
Support for Re-cycle, a small charity working in Uganda to provide reconditioned bicycles to families who have no other means of transport. The team also train local people in bicyle maintenance so that the bicycle becomes a sustainable transport option. The ability to travel far greater distances and much more quickly completely transforms the lives of many families in great need and dramatically increases their potential for sustainable and positive livelihoods.
We know that each of these projects is run by excellent and dedicated people, bringing help directly to where it is desperately needed. We are really proud to be supporting each of them.