We’re recruiting! Volunteer Fundraiser: apply now

We’re excited to be recruiting for a Volunteer Fundraiser to join our visionary, enthusiastic and friendly team! Working flexibly, the successful candidate will be highly involved in our success, as we gear up to build Cambodia’s first sensory room later this year, as well as provide life-changing sensory facilities to a children’s A&E in the North West of England.

SicKids volunteer vacancy – June 2017 v0.1

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Developing valuable first aid skills in the community in Cambodia

Over the last couple of days our founder Andrew and grant recipient Joan have co-delivered first aid training to over 50 social workers, teachers and other non-clinical team members at M’Lop Tapang. This follows the great work started by Andrew and our first grant recipient, Sue Higgins, a year ago.

This training has been part-supported by the British Medical Association via their humanitarian fund.

Crucially, this time the focus was on teaching new life-saving skills to people who live and work in and around M’Lop Tapang’s communities who aren’t members of the medical or nursing team but work closely with children and young people every day.

Joan has also been busy reviewing the first aid training material at M’Lop Tapang, making recommendations about delivery and evaluation for the team, led by Medical Program Manager Ngov Chanravy (Ravy).

Ravy says:

“The first aid training was really enjoyable and it was very well received. Thanks to Joan, Andrew, the SicKids team and the BMA for their support helping people who work every day with children and young people in the community here in Sihanoukville.”

Learn more about our work supporting the health and wellbeing of children and young people on the UK and Cambodia, and how to support us on Youtube.

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Opening a new medical learning resource centre in Sihanoukville, Cambodia

During her first four days in Cambodia, Dr Joan Livesley has been developing a new space at M’Lop Tapang for medical and nursing team members at the children’s health centre to learn and develop their skills.

Opened today, the new learning resource centre has been made possible by the provision of text books by the British Medical Association, updating the resources already available at M’Lop Tapang.

Joan, a senior lecturer in the School of Nursing, Midwifery, Social Work and Social Sciences at Salford University, is currently spending a week in Cambodia enhancing the health and wellbeing of children and young people in the local community, developing her own skills. She’s the recipient of our second outreach grant, made possible by funding from the BMA Humanitarian Fund.

Ngov Chanravy (Ravy) Medical Program Manager for M’Lop Tapang says:

“The new learning resource centre created by Joan with the support of the British Medical Association will make a big difference to the children and young people our medical and nursing teams at M’Lop Tapang care for. Our new books are fully up-to-date, helping our collective knowledge to be consistent. Many thanks to Joan, SicKids and the BMA for providing this facility.”

Joan says:

“It’s important that medical and nursing teams have ready access to reputable resources like the updated books provided by the British Medical Association. The teams here at M’Lop Tapang already do an outstanding job, providing services for over 7,500 children and young people a year. With easier access to learning resources, the high level of skill the team has can only improve. I’m delighted to have created this space as a kickstarter for M’Lop Tapang to maintain with future support from SicKids.”

Our medical outreach project supports the health and wellbeing of children and young people in Cambodia and the North West of England by providing grants for UK medical professionals to learn and develop their own skills during field visits to Cambodia. Click here to learn more and support us.

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Joan gets to know the community at M’Lop Tapang

After 48 hours travelling, our second grant recipient, Dr Joan Livesley, arrived in Sihanoukville this morning. We believe M’Lop Tapang is among the best health care centres for children and young people in Cambodia. For the last two years we’ve been working closely with them to to support the relief of health issues facing children and young people in the community, including malnutrition, respiratory infections, the affects of parental alcohol and drug use, skin diseases, developmental delay and the consequences of child abuse.

On arrival at M’Lop Tapang Joan got straight into the swing of things with a tour of the centre, which delivered over 30,000 free medical and dental treatments last year alone, providing support to over 7,500 children. M’Lop Tapang is more than a heath centre, though. It provides education, healthcare and support for thousands of children and young people. Joan met children enjoying a dance lesson, and got stuck in, learning the intricate moves of Khmer dance.

Tomorrow Joan will begin her research, meeting children and young people from across the community to learn about the issues that affect them, before starting work on developing a learning centre for M’Lop Tapang’s health and social care teams, including books donated by the British Medical Association.

Joan’s grant is funded through SicKids’ supporters, and a generous contribution from the BMA Humanitarian Fund. To help us give amazing development opportunities to more UK health and social care workers, please consider a donation. No matter how big or small, every penny makes a difference to the lives of children and young people in the North West of England and Cambodia.

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How to build a sensory room – Part Two: It’s good to talk!

While we’re continuing to seek funding to build our first two sensory rooms, we’ve been busy making exciting plans about how to design these spaces, which will enhance the wellbeing of children and young with developmental delay.

Our Director of Nursing, Dianne Cook, has met with Ruth Bell, Learning Disability Specialist Nurse for Pennine Acute Hospital Trust, to discuss the project.

Working with Ruth, Dianne has begun to seek advice on the environment and equipment required to build a sensory room and best provide support to children and young people with a learning disability who attend A&E with acute illness or injury.

Dianne has also been consulting with parents who’ve attended emergency departments with children with learning disabilities, who have enthusiastically offered their own experience and knowledge to help us design the ideal sensory space to contrast the noisy, often scary environment of the A&E.

Dianne says:

“It’s really important that we get the absolute best value out of our sensory rooms. We’re not just looking for the flashest, most fancy equipment. We want the equipment that will make the biggest difference to children, and who better to give us advice on that than the parents of children and young people who would benefit most? We’ll be continuing to talk to parents and medical experts as we build a ‘shopping list’ ahead of building the space.”

We’re still fund raising to make this life-changing project a reality, so please click here to donate any amount – no matter how big or small, it’ll help us make a massive difference to many lives.

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How to build a sensory room – Part One: Raise some money!

This year we aim to build two sensory rooms. One in the children’s A&E at North Manchester General Hospital (which will be one of a shockingly low number of sensory rooms in a UK emergency department), and the first sensory room in Cambodia.

We believe sensory equipment is a vital part of enhancing the wellbeing of children and young people with developmental delay, and we’re determined to make this happen.

We’re delighted to have already raised enough funds to begin work on our Cambodia sensory room in November this year. Our Chairperson Andrew and grant recipient Joan will be scouting out a suitable location for this during their outreach visit in May.

We’re also thrilled to have received £500 from the Duchy of Lancaster towards our sensory equipment for North Manchester General Hospital.

Our Trustee, Jimmy Stuart, says:

“Sensory equipment has been used to support child health in lots of settings in the UK, but many health facilities still do not have access to this kind of equipment. This year we’re determined to challenge this disappointing lack of sensory equipment in core medical facilities by providing a sensory space to North Manchester General Hospital. A massive ‘thanks’ to the Duchy of Lancaster for helping us make this a reality. We continue to seek support from grant giving trusts and kind supporters.”

The video below explains a little more about our sensory room project, and you can click here to make a donation – no matter how big or small, it all makes a difference.

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We’ve awarded our second outreach grant

Thanks to support from the British Medical Association Humanitarian fund, a fund designed to support and encourage the development of new initiatives to help teams undertake humanitarian projects in low income countries, we’ve awarded our second outreach grant to Dr Joan Livesley.

It means Joan will join our Chairperson, Professor Andrew Rowland, on his outreach visit to Southern Cambodia in early May.

Following our first grant recipient, Sister Sue Higgins’ visit last year, Joan will spend a week continuing and developing on the great work already underway since we started working directly in the community of Sihanoukville two years ago.

Joan will co-deliver and evaluate First Aid Training, as well as develop an innovative in-house medical library and educational area at M’Lop Tapang, a leading children’s health centre in South West Cambodia.

Joan originally qualified as a children’s nurse and has since worked with children and their families in the children’s intensive care unit, the children’s renal replacement unit and the intravenous feeding team at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital. She joined the School of Nursing at the University of Salford in 1985 and currently works as a senior lecturer in the School of Nursing, Midwifery, Social Work and Social Care. She works with home and international post-graduate students studying multi-professional working and Child Health. She has published research papers about children in hospital, safeguarding children and young people, inter-agency working and evidence-based practice. Joan undertakes research in partnership with children, young people and their families and medical and social care professionals who work with them.

Joan says:

“I’d like to thank SicKids and the BMA Humanitarian Fund for giving me this extraordinary opportunity to learn more about the humanitarian needs of children and young people in Cambodia, and the opportunity to conduct valuable research, and gain first hand insight into the excellent work already being delivered by SicKids and M’Lop Tapang in Cambodia, as well as the health and social care challenges of the region.”

Joan will arrive in Cambodia for a week-long outreach visit on 1 May.

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Sharing essential skills in the local community

As part of our medical outreach project, today we’ve been delivering essential Children’s First Aid skills to members of the local community in North Manchester.

We believe it’s important that members of local communities have these skills, yet such training workshops often carry a hefty price tag. Working with our friends at UKIM Khizra Mosque, SicKids Trustees Dianne Cook and Andrew Rowland delivered the training voluntarily, and at no cost to our supporters. Sixty parents and young people took part, gaining knowledge and practicing skills to preserve life in emergency situations involving infants and children.

Dianne says:

“It’s brilliant to see members of the local community coming together to gain knowledge that may help them save a life. We believe every parent, brother, sister and people who work with children and young people should understand a few basic skills. Having some basic life support skills gives people confidence to help preserve life in an emergency, until professional help arrives. Thank you to Khizra Mosque for hosting us, and to everyone who came along today.”

We’re delighted to work closely with the local community in the North West of England. While this particular event didn’t cost anything, we’re continuing to work on outreach projects to enhance the wellbeing, health and happiness of children. Please consider making a donation. Every penny will help us make a difference.

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We’re now a proud Global Giving partner

In the run up to Christmas 2016 we competed in Global Giving’s Gateway Challenge. Up for grabs: a coveted permanent spot on Global Giving’s world-leading charity crowdfunding site. We just had to get over £2,500 in donations across 50 or more donors in just five weeks – and we nailed it!


So why’s this a big deal?
While Global Giving’s site appears much like charity crowdfunding sites you might be familiar with (like JustGiving and Virgin Money Giving),  in the background the team there work tirelessly to match donors to projects. We reckon it’s a bit like online dating! High profile donors with a specific interest in the work we do with children and young people in Cambodia may be introduced to our projects proactively. We’re super excited about it – even if we do get first date jitters!

What are we fundraising for?
In 2017 our first focus is our sensory room project. £20,000 (£10,000 per sensory room) will provide life changing sensory facilities in a Manchester A&E as well as build Cambodia’s first sensory room. The health benefits for children with developmental delay, and the impact on their families, is incredible. More here:

What about your outreach project?
Our outreach project provides grants for UK medical professionals to visit the amazing health centre at M’Lop Tapang in Sihanoukville, Cambodia. It offers a superb professional development opportunity as well as a impacting personal experience for the grant recipient, as well as enhancing the healthcare of children and young people in Cambodia. We’ve already seen several hundred patients there – amazing! We’re absolutely committed to this project in 2017.


How to support us

Method What's it best for? Where your money goes
Donate with a credit/debit card or Paypal via VIRGIN MONEY GIVING Best way for UK taxpayers to donate in £ Everything we get via Virgin Money Giving goes straight to the project that needs it most. Currently these are medical outreach, our sensory room project in Manchester and our sensory room project in Cambodia. Virgin Money Giving's commission is 3.45-3.6%. As SicKids has no overheads every other penny goes straight to the cause.
Donate with a credit/debit card or PayPal via GLOBAL GIVING Best way for international supporters to donate in any currency, specifically to our Cambodian sensory rooms project Everything we get via Global Giving goes towards building the first sensory room in Cambodia. Global Giving's commission is 10%. As SicKids has no overheads every other penny goes straight to the cause.
By BANK TRANSFER or CHEQUE (Contact us for details) If you prefer not to donate online or wish to bypass Virgin Money Giving's 3.45-3.6% commission fee to we get even more of your donation Every single penny goes straight to the project that needs it most. Currently these are medical outreach, our sensory room project in Manchester and our sensory room project in Cambodia.
Earn free donations when you SHOP ONLINE via EASYFUNDRAISING Supporters who like to shop online at retailers like AMAZON, EBAY and hundreds more can earn free donations with every shop - it costs you nothing but means the world to us! Retailers pay easyfundraising commission when you shop with them via our special link, and easyfundraising pass this on to us as a donation towards the project that needs it most.
Thanks to everyone who’s supported us to improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people in 2016. Here’s to another amazing year!
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Amazing sensory facilities at Royal Alexandra Children’s hospital in Brighton

In 2017 our aim is to provide life changing sensory equipment for children in the UK and Cambodia.

Sensory equipment can really enhance the health and wellbeing of a child when they visit a hospital, yet there are very few facilities with 21st Century equipment in children’s emergency departments in the UK – and none we’re aware of anywhere in Cambodia.

Last month SicKids Trustees Andrew and Dianne, along with Nurse Sue Higgins, the first recipient of a SicKids grant who recently returned from an outreach trip to Cambodia, recently visited an example of truly excellent sensory facilities. The Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital has best-in-class facilities, which can really enhance the care they give to children who find themselves at A&E.

Here’s a video about our inspiring visit, and a reminder of our aims to raise funds to provide sensory equipment to children in the UK and Cambodia in 2017:

Thank you to the excellent team in Brighton for showing us around. Loving your work! 

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