Category Archives: Things We’ve Done

Father Christmas at St George’s

We had a great day handing out presents at St George’s helped by the wonderful play specialists. The photos are on facebook here and also here where parents can download hi-res versions using the username guest and the password Christmas. Thank you very much for the very talented photographer Hugh Miller who gave up his time and skills in order to help us out.

Santa 2014I received a nice e-mail after one of our Santa visits which i thought it would be good to share, I have changed the names to maintain anonymity.

I just wanted to say “thank-you” on behalf of my son Jack, who received a lovely teddy. It really cheered him up, as did the visit from father xmas and his little helper: his eyes lit up when he saw them (I think he was thinking “oh no, the door’s opening, someone in a uniform is coming to do something nasty to me”) and was lovely for his dad and mum to see. As you can appreciate, being in an isolation room at xmas is pretty grim for a kid. Jack has been poorly all his life and is a “regular” at St George’s, despite living 60 miles away in West Sussex. The distance makes it particularly difficult as his brother, Henry, who he is very close to, has to stay at his Grandma’s during his many stays at St George’s, so we are all split up as a family. Luckily, we were put on “home leave” for xmas but must return next Friday.

I think your charity is brilliant. As soon as I read the poster in the posh new parents room I could tell that the person who wrote it had a real insight into life for kids and their families in this situation that only personal experience (unfortunately) can bring.

Merry xmas to you all and keep up the good work!

Posted in Blog, Christian's Story, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , , , , .

New delivery to St Georges

A couple of weeks ago I did a quick delivery to St George’s Hospital! The Red Rocket was packed full of goodies and ready to go, I delivered…

2 kids electric ride on cars – Going to operations in a little electric car is far more fun and maybe less scary than on a wheelchair.

16 Night lights – little things are sometimes important

3 plug in electric portable heaters – bizarre but well needed

3 mini iPads – for the play specialist to carry around as a tool to help distract children when needed.

11 Whiteboards – for the kids’ rooms

The Rocket - full of goodies

The Rocket – full of goodies

Posted in Blog, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , .

Food Glorious Food

We strongly feel that our goal is to improve the life of children staying in hospitals. Sometimes that means spending money on buying things that make life better, but sometimes it involves putting pressure (gentle or otherwise) on authorities to make changes that we feel are important. All of the trustees in The Christian Blandford Fund, Peter, Claudia, Amy and Darren, have had children who have spent considerable time in NHS hospitals and have strong views of how to help others in that situation. One of our big concerns was the quality of the food in the wards at St George’s. At the Royal Marsden there was a wonderful chef and an assistant who took individual orders from each of the kids and made it freshly for them. At St George’s there was a trolley with pre cooked and reheated food similar to what you would get in an airplane, unsurprisingly much of the food was left untouched by the kids.

For some reason this has been a battle that has taken a long time to win, but we are delighted to have finally made some progress. Together with Samuel’s Charity we were ready to pay for the cost of having a couple of hostesses to take the children’s orders, so the food could be prepared in the kitchens. The hospital, fortunately, managed to find the funds from elsewhere and the quality of the food is now considerably improved. We are delighted, well done to Martin, Samuel’s dad, who did so much to push this forward.

There are big plans afoot to make improvements at St George’s and we hope that our voice continues to be heard so the things that we feel need to be improved upon are prioritised.

Food

Posted in Blog, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , .

PS Vitas for the wards

We have just bought some of these great PS Vitas with some cool games for the children on the wards at St George’s. Time moves slowly when you’re in bed all day in hospital, hopefully these will add a bit of fun!

2487022-0287241418-23768

Posted in Blog, Things We've Done. Tagged with , .

Momentum Meeting

Claudia, Darren and Amy are meeting with the lovely people at Momentum today. They have done some great work at Kingston Hospital and we are hoping to work with them on improvements to St George’s.

I have been playing some more with the website. I have now gone right through the Christian’s Story Page and made every day an individual entry on the blog, rather than a long page.

This means that I can now filter out all the fund raising posts, which I have linked to in the menu or all the posts about Christian, which is what the new Christian’s Story menu link now points to.

It  now makes it possible to link to any individual story or fund raising event and share it on Facebook or Twitter.

I think it’s time I stopped fiddling now.

Posted in Blog, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , , .

A great donation for a fabulous cause

Thank you to the fantastic Lancashire foundation who donated £3,400 to pay for an amazing piece of kit (http://www.accuvein.com/) that makes inserting cannulas (needles for blood) much less painful for children. We have bought four of these wonderful machines together with Samuel’s Charity.

Thank you to Adam King for putting The Christian Blandford Fund forward for this.

Martin, from Samuel’s charity, explained the need for these very well…

We are looking to buy two more infrared scanners that shows where veins are so injections are made first time, every time.This is huge. No one likes injections but it can take 2,3,4 or sometimes more attempts to find a vein, especially after weeks or months of treatment. This is not only painful but very distressing for many kids (and adults!). Some medicines make you more sensitive so an injection feels more like being stabbed than a ‘sharp scratch’. Very often prolonged medicine treatment like Chemotherapy does this. Not to mention the psychological impact of worrying about frequent and painful injections.Now, because of support and donations, we bought one of these amazing pieces of equipment, an Accuview. Being able to get the vein first time cuts down the amount of pain and upset hugely. But that’s not all. Small kids have small veins and often you have to ‘root around’ (a medical term, apparently!) to find the right position. The Accuview solves this – they can get in the vein first time and no rooting around, seriously reducing the pain down.I spoke to the nurses yesterday and they all loved the Accuview, even the most senior nurses were raving about it!

This one piece of equipment has already made many kids on the ward much happier, and their days will not be as overshadowed with the worry of painful, repeated attempts for injections.

This doesn’t just help the children, though. As a parent I hate to see my kids go through pain. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done asking Samuel to have repeated and painful procedures, knowing it would hurt, and not being able to take the pain away or protect him. With Accuview we can go some way to doing this and that means so much to me.

Each one costs a few thousand pounds so we still need help as we need two more of these amazing machines for the other childrens wards at St Georges Hospital.

Posted in Blog, Fund Raising, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , , .

Christmas gifts for the children at St George’s

We have had a great day handing out presents to the Children who are unfortunate enough to be at St George’s over Christmas. Christian was a fab Elf and we had lots of help from the wonderful staff at the hospital. Henry stepped in as official photographer and took some photos which are here. I have included a hi-res copy which parents can use for personal use as they wish, just press the download button on the photo you want.

 

Posted in Blog, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , , , , , , , .

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas

It is becoming an annual event, The Bowler and Hancox Families wrap up the presents and Peter, Henry and Christian pop over to St George’s as Santa and his two helpers. Today was very special with some really lovely children who seemed very happy with the visit. We hope they all get back to the comfort of their homes soon.

The photos are all here, we have made it so the photos are all downloadable in hi-res for the parents of the children that Santa saw.

Posted in Blog, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , , , , , , .

Christian Meets Mark Owen and Opens a Garden

The Christian Blandford Fund made a significant contribution toward this amazing new garden at St George’s. It is a wonderful private space for children to get away from the wards. Mark Owen was very kind to come and open it. He was fantastic, signing loads of autographs, posing for photos, visiting the wards, and presenting the hospital with a £20,000 from The Take That Foundation. The photos are here.

Christian and Mark

Posted in Blog, Christian's Story, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , , , , .

Christmas visit to St George’s

Just before Christmas, Christian, Peter and Henry went to St George’s again to be Santa and elves and hand out presents to children unfortunate enough to be in hospital during the festive period.

The Bowler family and the Hancox family did a great job of wrapping all the present and delivering them so they were ready for Santa to hand them out. This year we bought more than ever so plenty were left over for arrivals on or just after Christmas. Neil Berrecloth popped in to help and the play specialists, very efficient in sorting out the right presents for each child.

There are more photos on Facebook

The next day, I got this lovely e-mail

I just wanted to say “thank-you” on behalf of my son Alex, who received a lovely teddy. It really cheered him up, as did the visit from father Xmas and his little helper: his eyes lit up when he saw them (I think he was thinking “oh no, the door’s opening, someone in a uniform is coming to do something nasty to me”) and was lovely for his dad and mum to see. As you can appreciate, being in an isolation room at Xmas is pretty grim for a kid. Alex has been poorly all his life and is a “regular” at St George’s, despite living 60 miles away in West Sussex. The distance makes it particularly difficult as his brother William, who he is very close to, has to stay at his Grandma’s during his many stays at St George’s, so we are all split up as a family. Luckily, we were put on “home leave” for Xmas but must return next Friday.

I think your charity is brilliant. As soon as I read the poster in the posh new parents room I could tell that the person who wrote it had a real insight into life for kids and their families in this situation that only personal experience (unfortunately) can bring.

Merry Xmas to you all and keep up the good work!

Santa and the elves

 

Posted in Blog, Things We've Done. Tagged with , , , , , , , .