Mum holding baby, CASPA parents of children with autismCare

CASPA

Our donation to CASPA funds Support Group for parents and carers of children with autism

Children on the Autistic Spectrum Parent’s Association (CASPA), based in Bromley, Kent, works with around 270 autistic individuals every week. The charity helps build their confidence, sense of self-worth and social and practical skills.

And, as Helen Dyer, Director of CASPA, says: “Parents of children with autism often feel that they are fighting a constant battle. As much as children need a break and understanding, which CASPA provides, parents do too.”

So, our donation of £2,300 will fund a support group based in Orpington, Kent for 100+ parents/carers. They meet and talk, hear and share stories of achievements and struggles. And here they can also discuss ways in which they can help their child with the support of CASPA professionals.

“Just being able to share stories, cry and laugh with other parents/carers in the same situation enables our group members to feel less isolated and ostracised. As they tell us, these groups provide a lifeline when things as an Autism parent get tough.

“This funding is hugely needed and appreciated. It will enable us to keep doing what we do best – providing direct support! Thank you Axis Foundation” – Helen Dyer, Director of CASPA

A CASPA parent says

“The support group has been a lifeline for some of us. It’s a safe place for us to talk and to be able to exchange information on various subjects such as schools, behaviour tips and just to ‘offload’. CASPA goes above and beyond to support our children and our families. This service has definitely saved my sanity on many occasions over the years! We love CASPA!”

More about CASPA

Many autistic people become socially isolated. So they miss out on educational, social and employment opportunities. CASPA runs a wide range of programmes for children, young people and adults on the autism spectrum encouraging them to participate in variety of positive activities. These activities develop social and communication skills and provide learning opportunities, fostering independent living and employment skills.

During lockdown CASPA took their parent support groups online to continue supporting families.

More here http://www.caspabromley.org.uk

 

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Collage showing massage and two women in a bus one in yellow vest, one in bright scarf SEDSCare

Sussex Ehlers-Danlos Syndromes and Hypermobility Support (SEDS)

Our donation to Sussex Ehlers-Danlos Syndromes and Hypermobility Support (SEDS) helps people with Ehlers-Danlos Syndromes (EDS). EDS is closely related to Hypermobility Spectrum Disorder (HSD).

Pilates, hydrotherapy, osteopathy, acupuncture, physio and massage all help people with EDS/HSD by strengthening and relaxing muscles.

And our donation of £3,000 will fund some of these activities which are offered by SEDS’ Hypermobility-aware specialised practitioners, either 1-2-1 or in specialised groups.

“We are very grateful to the Axis Foundation for their donation. The feedback we are getting from those people with EDS/HSD who have participated in physical activities is amazing. In the longer term we believe that sufferers can sometimes learn to improve – or at least maintain – their own physical health. This might mean less reliance on the NHS from damage they can inadvertently inflict on their bodies. It can also improve their mental well-being” – Jane Green, Founder and Chair of SEDS

More about EDS/HSD

EDS/HSD is a multi-systemic disorder for which there is no care pathway. The condition affects connective tissues throughout the body. Common symptoms include: dislocations, pain, Chronic Fatigue syndrome/ME, allergies, fibromyalgia pain, gastro-intestinal problems, anxiety, heart issues plus other associations. The condition is life limiting: many people with EDS/HSD lose careers, colleagues, friends and hobbies.

More about SEDS

SEDS advocates actively for members locally in Sussex and also for their families, friends and carers. The charity also works with other organisations to improve awareness and create a care pathway. During COVID-19 the charity conducted successful online EDS/HSD specialised Pilates classes.

Mental health support

Persistent and acute pain affect mental health whilst fatigue adds to the isolation many sufferers experience. SEDS provides further direct support for members with their mental health.

Pictured:  SEDS event day helping members gain confidence and to access travelling; 1:1 Covid-safe deep tissue massage helping muscle spasms rigidity.

Read more here about their work here.

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Fight Against Blindness

The Axis Foundation helps children with sight loss and blindness.

Fight Against Blindness offers genetic testing, and funds research to find treatments to cure eye disease. The charity also provides psychological support for children and families attending UK Hospital Eye Clinics and helps raise awareness of children’s eye disease.

Fight Against Blindness works at the Eye Clinic Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, the Oxford Eye Hospital (John Radcliffe), the Southampton Eye Unit (Southampton General Hospital), and Bristol Eye Hospital Children’s Unit.

The Axis Foundation has donated £8,460 to develop a Wheelie Ward Suitcase for use at Bristol Eye Hospital Children’s Unit to help the charity’s work supporting children with sight loss and blindness.

The suitcase will contain essential ophthalmic diagnostic equipment and is portable enabling clinicians to complete full assessments on children who have been admitted to hospital wards and cannot be attended to in the eye department because they are either on the paediatric intensive care units, are too unwell to travel in wheelchairs or are vulnerable to infection due to immune-suppression.

“We are delighted that the Axis Foundation are supporting us” – Sarah Williams, Trustee. Fight Against Blindness

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Oliver Fisher Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Liam and Amy Hayes’ son Benjamin Jeffrey John Hayes was born on Sunday 12 May 2019 and sadly passed away 10 days later.

At The Oliver Fisher Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in Medway the doctors and nurses gave Benjamin the very best care they could before he was transferred to Demelza.

The Axis Foundation’s annual charity ball in 2019 raised record-breaking sums, with the help of our generous and kind guests, which were shared between our charity partner Demelza and The Oliver Fisher Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Birth of a Special Care Baby Unit

In 1983, Dr Oliver Fisher created a Special Care Baby Unit in All Saints Hospital in Kent. The unit then had just two special care cots.

And now

Now based in Medway Maritime Hospital, the unit has 36 cots including eight intensive care, eight transitional care, four high dependency and 16 special care cots. In 2018, The Oliver Fisher Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, admitted 1226 babies. The unit serves Kent, London and the South East.

The work

The Unit cares for babies born prematurely or who are sick and need intensive care in a highly specialised facility, with skilled staff and sophisticated equipment. It provides all neonatal medical intensive care (excluding cardiology) and also Cooling Therapy for babies with Hypoxic Ischaemic Encephalopathy: a brain problem following lack of oxygen and blood supply at birth.

The team

The team comprises two Paediatric Surgeons, jointly appointed with Kings College Hospital, and a dedicated Neonatal Transport Team.

Quality of life

The Oliver Fisher Neonatal Intensive Care Unit has increased the number of babies for whom they care. And the team has also increased the percentage of babies who have survived – and survived well, to have good quality of life.

Oliver Fisher Special Care Baby Trust

The Oliver Fisher Special Care Baby Trust (OFSCBT) raises additional funds to purchase essential equipment for The Oliver Fisher Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

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Read Benjamin’s story by Liam Hayes here

Read more about the Axis Foundation and Demelza here

Read more about the Axis Foundation’s annual charity ball 2019 here

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Woman’s Trust

Woman’s Trust to pioneer new therapy for domestic abuse survivors through Axis Foundation funding.

Woman’s Trust is a charity that offers support services to domestic abuse survivors in Greater London. Our donation of £3350 will help them to pilot a new therapy,  in the form of group therapy, for domestic abuse,. Their sessions give vulnerable women a chance to recover, as well as deliver a long-term, positive impact on their mental health.

Group sessions allow women the opportunity to connect with other survivors – Heidi Riedel, CEO

Thousands of women benefit from the support of Woman’s Trust. The group counselling sessions are important because of the networks created through interaction. Women value the support from each other, which differs to the support received  from agencies, families or friends. It provides the potential for a lasting resolution.

CEO Heidi Riedel, thinks that group counselling will be important because it can provide a support network. She said: “We know that some of the biggest issues women have to contend with are around isolation. Group sessions allow women the opportunity to connect with other survivors. They receive encouragement, support, and empathy in a non-judgemental environment so many of the women go on to form lasting friendships.”

Domestic abuse is the single largest cause of depression in women across the UK. It has links to drug misuse as well as addiction and other mental health conditions. The Woman’s Trust has supported more than 14,500 women and provided the equivalent of over £4.5m in vital mental health care for survivors.

To find out more, visit www.womanstrust.org.uk.

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Cyclists Fighting Cancer

Cyclists Fighting Cancer (CFC) donates bikes and adapted trikes to children with cancer.The Axis Foundation donated £5,000 to support their work which improves lives and well being.

Alice Wragg, Fundraiser, says: “The Axis Foundation’s generous donation will allow us to purchase 10 bikes or 3 specialist trikes for those children who are successful in their application to Cyclists Fighting Cancer . The donation will help us to change the lives of children and young people living with a cancer diagnosis.. on behalf of the whole Cyclists Fighting Cancer team, thank you for the generous donation.”

We know that cycling is good exercise – and for children with cancer it is even more beneficial: Alice explains why:

“Exercise is an effective way to improve both the mental and physical side effects of cancer and its treatment. Cycling in particular is a great way for children with cancer to enjoy exercise as it is low impact, sociable and a great escape from hospital visits and ongoing treatment.”

Some children may be unable to ride a conventional bike as a result of treatment – they may have balance issues, numbness, fatigue or have had amputations or be wheelchair-bound. CFC makes required adaptions to bikes and trikes.

CFC works closely with the 21 paediatric oncology units around the UK, as well as with other charities that work with childhood cancer (i.e. CLIC Sargent, Teenage Cancer Trust, The Rainbow Trust etc). Their specially trained Cancer Exercise Specialists regularly offer advice regarding physical fitness and on-bike and trike applications.

The charity has donated 5,000 bikes and adapted trikes to children with cancer since the charity’s inception in 2005.

 

 

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Axis foundation helps to fund specialist bathroom to young girlCare

Fund For Isabella

Foundation donates towards a specialist bathroom for young Isabella.

Aged two months Isabella had been diagnosed with a serious birth defect – neuronal migration disorder – and epilepsy. Her parents, Nicola and Robert were of course devastated by this news.

Now aged four, Isabella has very limited mobility and is confined to a wheelchair. She is unable to speak, and her family, including her young siblings, is on constant guard as the risk of seizure is never far away.

To give their daughter more freedom of movement, Nicola and Robert moved to a bungalow and adapted it – widening the doors for example – with the aid of a grant.

Respite stays at Demelza Hospice for Sick Children provide comfort and practical support too – for all the family. (Demelza is the charity partner to the Axis Foundation and parent company Axis Europe plc). Here Isabella benefits from using the sensory room while their specialist bathroom is both practical and safe for her and her carers.

Nicola and Robert desperately wanted to install a similar specialist bathroom at their home. Sadly, their local authority was only able to offer a shower: the costs of installation were well beyond Nicola and Robert’s budget.

At this point, the Axis Foundation stepped in, funding a specialist bath costing £10,000, paying for installation and materials, and turning a dream into a reality.

“We can’t believe it! Grateful doesn’t even cover it! You guys will never know how much this means to us! THANK YOU!” – Nicola and Robert, Isabella’s parents

The Axis Foundation has reached a milestone of 10 years of donations to small, local, impactful causes. #10YrsGiving

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HOPE

Foundation helps HOPE to provide support for children with epilepsy and their families.

At HOPE children with epilepsy can meet each other, have fun, learn to “enjoy life” and not feel so alone. Volunteers play with the children and their siblings and provide respite for the parents. HOPE encourages parents of children with epilepsy and carers to meet, relax over refreshments, share information and build relationships. This helps reduce stress and anxiety enabling them to be better emotionally equipped to support their child.

Overall, HOPE aims to promote awareness regarding the problems and circumstances of families living with epilepsy. The children who attend London-based HOPE suffer from complex epilepsy with different seizure types. Many have other conditions associated with complex epilepsy such as autism, developmental delay, ADHD and physical disabilities.

HOPE’s Anti Sudden Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP) Project provides Anti Suffocation Pillows free of charge to any child living in the Greater London area who suffers from convulsive seizures.

Collage of children with epilepsy at hope

The Axis Foundation’s £2,000 donation will buy Anti-Suffocation Pillows for children with Epilepsy. Anti Suffocation Pillows help those lying face down with convulsive seizures to breathe more easily thereby helping to prevent brain damage and death.

“The HOPE Team are absolutely thrilled that the Axis Foundation has agreed to make a donation to help HOPE fund Anti Suffocation Pillows for children with Complex Epilepsy. From the bottom of my heart thank you to you all at the Axis Foundation for this generous donation! We can help so many children now with our Anti Suffocation Pillow Project. It’s truly amazing and We are over the moon. Once again, thank you Axis Foundation for assisting us carrying on our work”
Dr Nadine Gurr – Chair

“We are extremely grateful to the Axis Foundation for their kind donation to HOPE. Childhood epilepsy can be stressful for the whole family, particularly as many children with epilepsy also have additional needs. This generous donation will help us in our aim to support children with epilepsy and their families. It will be used to buy Anti-Suffocation Pillows, which families tell us can help to reduce their worries about their children sleeping in their own bedrooms at night”
Dr Sophie Bennett – Vice Chair

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Paul’s Cancer Support Centre

Two donations help Paul’s Cancer Support Centre train and recruit new volunteers.

Volunteers at Paul’s Cancer Support Centre provide emotional, physical and psychological support for 500 cancer patients a year. The Centre also has a Home Visiting Service for 100 patients who are too frail to make the journey to the premises in south west London.

The Axis Foundation has made two donations to Paul’s Cancer Support Centre. Our first donation (£3,300 in 2017) recruited and trained four massage therapists, three reflexologists and one befriender; our second (£2,500 in 2018) trained nine new Home Visiting Service volunteers.

“On behalf of the Trustees, staff, volunteers and clients at Paul’s Cancer Support, I would like to thank you and your Fellow Trustees for all your support. We are truly grateful” – Scheherazade Ameer, Fundraising Manager

“Funding into our volunteers’ training is vital for us to provide support for cancer patients. We are so appreciative of the grant we received from the Axis Foundation. We cannot deliver our services without volunteers” Marisca Ribeiro, Services Manager

Real help at home

Scheherazade Ameer, Fundraising Manager, explained: “All our Home Visiting Service volunteers have to complete our high-quality, specially-designed 32-hour course. A nationally recognised expert in cancer and bereavement counselling has assessed our course as ‘a model of excellence’. We then match our Volunteers to Home Visiting Service clients once we receive their DBS approval.”

A Home Visitor Trainee told us: “Helping others is a humbling experience which also provides a great amount of satisfaction. I hope to gain a better understanding of the challenges those with cancer face so I can provide more effective and supportive massage treatments to them and contribute to improving their predicament, even if for a short while.”

A  Home Visiting Service client said: “During a time when I was housebound, barely able to move about and seeking psychological and emotional assistance, this was the only local organisation who was able to provide face-to-face counselling in my own home; I am so grateful for that, and for how quickly it was organised.”

 

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Omega Care For Life

Our donation provides befriending network groups for this End of Life Charity

Omega Care for Life is a multi-award winning end of life charity which helps caring families, bereaved former caregivers and clients who are to coming to terms with terminal illness. Their motto is “caring is everyone’s business.”

Based in the West Midlands, Omega’s initiatives include the Chatterbox Action Against Loneliness and Crisis Support programme, a telephone-enhanced befriending service. They also offer a network of 13 Meeting Point support and friendship groups for caregivers and former carers. In addition, there is a Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Family Support Programme and life-changing, therapeutic work opportunities.

The Axis Foundation has donated £2,000 to Omega Care for Life’s vital support networks.

Omega Development Director Tom Memery thanked the Axis Foundation for its support and told us how the funds will be put to use:

“We’re using your generous grant to support two new groups: one an informal regular gathering of Chatterbox Befrienders and Co-ordinators and an income-generating Friendship and Omega Supporters Group… The clients we help are often socially isolated and benefit enormously from peer-support. Omega groups are a gateway to other sources of help and information offered by Omega and our delivery partners.

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