Our second and third Sensory Spaces in Cambodia are now open

Thanks to the generosity of The Toy Trust, we’re thrilled to announce the opening of two new SicKids Sensory Spaces in Sihanoukville, Cambodia.

This brings the total number of SicKids Sensory Spaces up to four, following last year’s successful opening of our first facility, at North Manchester General Hospital, and the milestone first-of-its-kind space in Cambodia.

Our two new Sensory Spaces are kitted out with top quality sensory toys and equipment, purchased by SicKids thanks to a grant from The Toy Trust, an awesome charity that exists to raise money predominantly from the toy industry, its suppliers and friends. It awards grants to other charities helping disadvantaged and disabled children.

  

Our new Phnom Kiev Sensory Space provides sensory support inside a specialist baby and child care unit in a particularly poor urban area. Despite being in the middle of the city, Phnom Kiev (Blue Mountain) is particularly hard to get to by road. Our equipment needed to be carried in a relay by staff and volunteers from the local community.

  

And we’ve opened a second Sensory Space at M’Lop Tapang’s main centre. This facility is specially built for babies and children under the age of five with developmental delay and/or malnutrition.

Before, I did not even know what a Sensory Space was. Now that we have one I understand how the room can help children with problems to calm down. They are able to focus more and concentrate more when they are in the room.

Ms. Chin Sophea, Special Needs Program Coordinator (M’Lop Tapang)

The Sensory Space has been such a great addition to our services. For the small children we work with that have suffered from severe neglect, the space allows them to explore in a safe environment and provide the sensory stimulation that that they have been lacking and helps with their development and healing.

Ms. Ngov Chanravy, Medical Program Manager (M’Lop Tapang)

We’re now working on our fifth, sixth and seventh SicKids Sensory Spaces, opening both in the UK and Cambodia in the coming months. Watch this space!

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Independent Regulator compliments “outstanding” SicKids Sensory Space

During the recent inspection of North Manchester General Hospital the Care Quality Commission (CQC), the independent regulator of health and adult social care in England, recognised our Sensory Space in the children’s emergency department.

Their report, dated 1 March 2018, said:

Urgent and emergency care had a bespoke sensory room for use with children who had a range of sensory impairments, including children on the autistic spectrum and children with learning disabilities. The room had been co-produced with patients and families and provided outstanding facilities.

We are delighted that our first Sensory Space has been singled out as an area of outstanding practice, less than five months after it was opened by the Deputy Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, Her Excellency the Cambodian Ambassador to the United Kingdom and the children and families who co-created our wonderful space.

Dianne Cook, Director of Nursing of SicKids, said:

“It is an absolute joy that our co-designed sensory space has been recognised by the CQC. This highlights the value of working together with children, young people and families, to provide innovative facilities which result in improved quality of care within emergency and urgent care departments”.

We’re delighted to confirm we’ll soon be opening more sensory spaces, both here in the UK and in Cambodia, which will provide amazing facilities for thousands more children and young people.

 

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SicKids Sensory Space grants now available

Do you work with Children and Young people in an Urgent Care Centre or Emergency Department in the North West of England?

We opened our first two SicKids Sensory Spaces in 2017. They’re kitted out with modern sensory toys and equipment, with a retail value of £4,200. We’re now offering Sensory Space Grants, along with consultation and expertise to support Emergency Departments or Urgent Care Centres in the North West to open their own Sensory Spaces.

Who qualifies?
Any North West of England Emergency Department or Urgent Care Centre that sees over 16,000 CYP annually and wishes to enhance and improve the patient experience and hospital journey of CYP with learning disabilities.

What is the grant value? £2,100 (in cash and equipment value) to help provide sensory equipment and facilities in your department, along with our personal consultation and support.

For more info and to apply click here

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Charity rugby match raises £1750 for SicKids

Sedgley Park Rugby Club (SPRUFC), also known as the Sedgley Tigers, from Whitefield in Bury, Manchester, have two charity games each season, one in November and the other in March. We’re thrilled that the club supported SicKids at its November event this year. The game was a league game vs Blaydon RFC which SPRUFC won 43-26. SPRUFC plays in National League (North) Div 2 and is currently ranking fourth in this division. The league is incredibly tight at the top with two points separating the top five clubs.

A massive thanks to the club for hosting a lunch before the match, with the proceeds going to SicKids. The lunch raised an amazing £1750, which will help us support children and young people in the North West of England and in Cambodia in 2018.

   

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We’ve opened our first-of-its-kind Sensory Space in Cambodia

We’re delighted to have held the grand opening of the SicKids Sensory Space at M’Lop Tapang, a non-governmental organisation whose services reach over 7,500 children and young people in the Sihanouk province of southern Cambodia.

It’s the first-of-its-kind in Cambodia, and has been built thanks to the generosity of SicKids’ supporters and Rompa®, a leading supplier of sensory equipment.

Sensory facilities are proven to support the development of the senses – like touch, hearing and sight – through special lighting, music, tactile objects and a calming environment.

The SicKids Sensory Space at M’Lop Tapang is the second sensory facility we’ve opened. With our vision to support the health and wellbeing of children and young people in both the North West and in Cambodia, South East Asia, we’re currently focusing on the provision of life-enhancing sensory facilities in both regions.

Since the opening of the first SicKids Sensory Space at North Manchester General Hospital in September, children have benefited from the life-enhancing opportunities it offers 24/7.

Now the same opportunities are available in one of Cambodia’s poorest regions, where developmental delay is prevalent among children and young people, due to health concerns related to poverty.

This YouTube playlist explains more:

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Charlie’s got sore feet – and a nice big donation for SicKids :-)

A massive ‘thanks’ to Charlie Stuart, one of our supporters, for completing the Dublin marathon in aid of SicKids.

Yesterday’s 26.2 mile race through the streets of Dublin was Charlie’s first full marathon, which he completed in an impressive 3 hours, 28 minutes, raising just under £500.

Charlie said:

I decided to raise money for SicKids after looking at the website and being taken aback with the work they’ve done, projects currently ongoing and plans for the future. The fundamental principal of providing care, aid and assistance to those in desperate need resonated with me strongly, resulting in my desire to help in any way I could.

Well done and thanks to Charlie! He may be our first sports challenge supporter, but we hope he’s not our last!

Please get in touch if you’re up for a run, swim, walk, ride or any other kind of sporting activity and raise funds for us to help children in the UK and Cambodia.

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Sharing medical expertise with Cambodia’s Ravy

We’ve just waved goodbye to M’Lop Tapang’s Medical Team Leader Ngov Chanravy (Ravy), who spent a fantastic week in the UK thanks to a SicKids grant, supported by the Burdett Trust for Nursing.

The equivalent to an Advanced Paediatric Nurse Practitioner / Nurse Consultant in the UK, Ravy has been running one of the most advanced medical programmes for children and young people in South West Cambodia for over a decade.

She was awarded our grant in order to spend time working within an NHS environment, alongside an excellent team of medics and nurses from the Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, Salford University and NHS England.

Ravy was hosted by Sue Higgins, a children’s nurse who was the first recipient of one of our outreach grants last year, when she worked alongside Ravy and her fantastic M’Lop Tapang team. Ravy stayed at Sue’s family home, and also spent time shadowing Sue at the children’s emergency department at North Manchester General Hospital. During Sue’s visit to Cambodia last year, she taught Ravy and her team about the advantages of triage when dealing with emergencies – a process Ravy has now experienced first hand.

Her visit was well-timed to coincide with the grand opening of our first-of-its-kind Sensory Space. Sensory facilities are proven to support the development of the senses – like touch, hearing and sight – through cool things like special lighting, music, tactile objects and a calming environment. While many hospitals and health centres in the UK have similar facilities in their children’s wards, there are very few with 21st Century equipment within their emergency departments.

Ravy and the SicKids team welcomed Mr Barry Dixon CBE DL, Deputy Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, and Her Excellency Dr Rathchavy Soeung, The Cambodian Ambassador to the UK to the grand opening of the SicKids Sensory Space. She presented them with friendship bracelets, which were hand-made by parents of children attending M’Lop Tapang in Cambodia. The sale of each bracelet helps to support street-living and street-working children, young people, and their families, and keep children in school.

During the week Ravy also visited Fairfield General Hospital, Bury, where she met Dr Bratati Bose-Haider, a consultant paediatrician. Bratati was recently awarded a SicKids grant and will travel to Cambodia in November to work alongside Ravy’s team during the opening of our first sensory space in Cambodia. While working with Bratati, Ravy learned about how the NHS assesses disabled children. These skills will assist the clinical team at M’Lop Tapang greatly when our amazing facility opens in a couple of months’ time.

Also while at Bury, Ravy spent time with the child development team, including a children’s physiotherapist, children’s orthoptist, speech and language therapist and a children’s occupational therapist. Practitioners such as these are either non-existent or very rare in Cambodia, and Ravy found learning about the importance of these roles in the development of child health fascinating and insightful.

During her time in the UK, the NHS Expo, an annual conference focused on innovation across all aspects of health and social care, was also being hosted in Manchester. Here Ravy learned about youth participation in the design of healthcare services courtesy of the NHS Youth Forum, supported by Kath Evans.

Tony Long, Professor of child and family health at Salford University, took Ravy to a local primary school to learn how to make research fun for young children to participate in.

And the child sexual exploitation team welcomed Ravy to their hub in Bolton, where she learned about the benefits of having social workers, police officers, youth workers, doctors and nurses working together as a co-ordinated team to identify children at risk of child sexual exploitation, and to work with them on preventative and supportive programs.

Ravy said:

I really appreciate the support of SicKids and the Burdett Trust for Nursing. During my visit to the UK I’ve learned a lot, and had so many experiences that I could not have in Cambodia. It has given me many ideas which I look forward to sharing with my colleagues at M’Lop Tapang to further enhance our work caring for vulnerable children and young people.

Thanks to Ravy for her enthusiasm, hard work and commitment during her outreach visit.

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We’ve opened our first sensory space to enhance medical and nursing care for children and young people

Today we held the grand opening of The SicKids Sensory Space at North Manchester General Hospital. Mr Barry Dixon CBE DL QFSM MIFireE, Deputy Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, performed the opening ceremony, alongside Her Excellency Dr Rathchavy Soeung, The Cambodian Ambassador to the UK.

Cambodian Ambassador to the UK, Her Excellency Dr Rathchavy Soeung, and Deputy Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, Mr Barry Dixon CBE DL, officially opening the SicKids Sensory Space (credit: LeeBoswellPhotography.com)

 

The sensory space is the first-of-its-kind in the region, and has been built thanks to the generosity of our supporters, The Duchy of Lancaster Benevolent Fund, The W O Street Charitable Foundation and The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust Children’s Emergency Department Endowment Fund.

Inside the SicKids Sensory Space, lighting effects and tactile objects, together with emoji cushions, help to support the care of children and young people in the Emergency Department

 

Sensory facilities are proven to support the development of the senses – like touch, hearing and sight – through cool things like special lighting, music, tactile objects and a calming environment. While many hospitals and health centres in the UK have similar facilities in their children’s wards, there are very few with 21st Century equipment within their emergency departments.

 

The first of many

Our vision is to support the health and wellbeing of children and young people in both the North West and in Cambodia, South East Asia. While the two regions are geographically and culturally divergent, we believe there are stark similarities and opportunities for health professionals in both countries to share knowledge and develop strategies to relieve sickness and enhance the wellbeing of children and young people.

Because of that, in November 2017 we’ll open our second state-of-the-art sensory facility, this time at M’Lop Tapang, a non-governmental community project in Sihanoukville, Cambodia. We believe this will be the first such facility in Cambodia, and will offer life-enhancing opportunities for many hundreds of children and young people with developmental delay, which, due to its link to conditions related to poverty, is prevalent in Cambodia.

In attendance at today’s grand opening was Her Excellency Dr Rathchavy Soeung, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Cambodia, who was keen to learn more about how children in Cambodia will benefit from a sensory space. M’Lop Tapang’s Medical Team Leader, Ngov Chanravy, who is visiting the UK this week as part of a career development opportunity co-funded by a SicKids grant, thanks to the Burdett Trust for Nursing, was also present.

Her Excellency is greeted as she arrives at the Children’s Emergency Department of North Manchester General Hospital (credit: LeeBoswellPhotography.com)

 

Designed by children and their families

The SicKids Sensory Space at North Manchester General Hospital was designed by local children and their families, who volunteered to support the project with creative input and ideas to make the facility as welcoming, attractive and effective as possible.

Vladimir Y Maximo, esq, Her Excellency Dr Rathchavy Soeung, SicKids’ Trustees Professor Andrew Rowland and Den Carter, Deputy Lieutenant Mr Barry Dixon CBE DL, SicKids Trustees Dr Jimmy Stuart and Dianne Cook (credit: LeeBoswellPhotography.com)

 

To symbolise the unique partnership between SicKids and the diverse communities in the North West of England and Cambodia, our Trustees presented the Deputy Lieutenant and the Ambassador with friendship bracelets. The colourful bracelets, are hand-made by parents of children attending the M’Lop Tapang facility in Cambodia. The sale of each bracelet, for US$1.25, helps to support street-living and street-working children, young people, and their families, and keep children in school.

Dr Jimmy Stuart, Her Excellency Dr Rathchavy Soeung, Ms Dianne Cook, Professor Andrew Rowland, Mr Den Carter, Mr Barry Dixon CBE DL, Miss Ngov Chanravy (credit: LeeBoswellPhotography.com)

 

Professor Andrew Rowland, SicKids’ founder and chairperson, said:

“Thanks to the generosity of our supporters, as well as The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, I’m thrilled about the opening of the first-ever SicKids Sensory Space. An amazing team work here at the children’s emergency department at North Manchester General Hospital, and the sensory space will help them go even further in the lifesaving and supportive care they offer to acutely unwell and injured children within the local region.”

 

Dianne Cook, Director of Nursing at SicKids said:

“It’s amazing that children, young people, and their families have co-designed this facility. Having a state-of-the-art sensory space in the children’s emergency department will really help the hospital to deliver better care to children and young people who attend the department with a learning or physical disability. It will also make the environment much more welcoming for children who are frightened about coming to hospital.”

 

Simon Featherstone, Director of Nursing at North Manchester General Hospital said:

“On behalf of The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, sincere thanks to the team at SicKids, and their supporters, for providing this excellent facility. Over 30,000 children and young people attend the emergency department at North Manchester General Hospital every year. I have no doubt that the new SicKids Sensory Space will significantly improve the care we offer them.”

 

Mr Barry Dixon CBE DL QFSM MIFireE, Deputy Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, said:

“I am delighted to welcome Her Excellency Dr Rathchavy Soeung to the fantastic city of Manchester, and to have the pleasure of opening this wonderful sensory space at North Manchester General Hospital. I’m sure it will make a great difference to the quality of care offered to children and young people. I look forward to hearing about the success of the facility, as well as the forthcoming opening of the sensory space in Cambodia.”

We’re still fundraising for our next Sensory Space in Cambodia, as well as future facilities in both the UK and Cambodia. Click here to support us.

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We’ve awarded an outreach grant to Dr Bratati Bose-Haider

Having already awarded three medical outreach grants, two to UK professionals visiting Cambodia, and one to a Cambodian professional to visit the UK, we’re delighted to have awarded another SicKids grant. The recipient is Dr Bratati Bose-Haider, consultant paediatrician at Fairfield General Hospital, Bury, and the first medical doctor to benefit from our grant programme.

Dr Bratati Bose-Haider will join SicKids in Cambodia this November

Bratati will be joining our Trustees, Professor Andrew Rowland and Den Carter, on a week-long visit to M’Lop Tapang, one of Cambodia’s best medical centres for children and young people, this November. She’ll provide expert advice on the management of children and young people with developmental delay – including all forms of disabilities. Her work will coincide with us building and launching our life-changing sensory room, funded by generous donations from our supporters.

 

A children’s doctor with over 35 years’ experience, Bratati set up the specialist child development centre in Bury. Her advice on how we can better support the children and young people with developmental delay already seen by our Chairperson Andrew, and previous grant recipients, will be invaluable.

 

Bratati says:

“I’m over the moon to have the opportunity to spend time with the excellent medical team at M’Lop Tapang. Having recently joined the SicKids Trustees on one of their regular Skype clinics with the team in Cambodia, I now can’t wait to get out there and learn about their brilliant work with children and young people.”

We’re still fund raising to make our sensory rooms in the UK and Cambodia as amazing as possible.

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Watch these two films to see how we’re investing your donations to improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people:

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Professional development opportunity for Cambodia’s Nurse Ravy

We’re thrilled to have been awarded a grant from the Burdett Trust for Nursing to fund a professional visit for M’Lop Tapang’s Medical Team Leader Ngov Chanravy (Ravy) this September.

The equivalent to an Advanced Paediatric Nurse Practitioner / Nurse Consultant in the UK, Ravy has been running one of the most advanced medical programmes for children and young people in South West Cambodia for over a decade.

While in the UK Ravy will be welcomed by our Trustees, and spend a week working alongside medical professionals from various facilities of the Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, as well as working in the community in Manchester. She’ll also spend time working with Nurse Sue Higgins, who was the first recipient of a SicKids outreach grant, and Joan Livesey, our second grant recipient. Both Sue and Joan have spent time in Cambodia working in Ravy’s clinic thanks to their SicKids grants.

During Ravy’s visit we’ll also open our sensory facility at North Manchester General Hospital, where she’ll spend time getting to grips with life-changing equipment similar to the kit she’ll be welcoming at M’Lop Tapang when we open Cambodia’s first sensory room in November this year.

Ravy said:

“I’m very excited to have the opportunity to visit the UK, and continue working closely with the team from SicKids. We already have a great working relationship, having been holding Skype clinics since January 2015, and it’s been a pleasure to welcome both Trustees and grant recipients to M’Lop Tapang. This visit is an excellent opportunity for me to gain new skills and knowledge, and learn about the sensory equipment which SicKids is kindly donating to us. Many thanks to the Burdett Trust for Nursing as well as SicKids. I can’t wait for my trip in September.”

We continue to raise funds to support our medical outreach work. Learn more about it in our video below, and please click here to support us.

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