Charlie House - £10,000
Supporting family wellbeing
Based in north east Scotland, Charlie House supports children and the families of children with life-limiting conditions and complex disabilities. They provide practical, emotional and therapeutic support to improve the mental health and wellbeing of families, helping them to maintain positive relationships and reduce isolation.
Support is given from birth, ensuring a smooth transition from hospital to home. The children typically suffer from conditions which mean they are unlikely to live beyond childhood. They're increasingly dependent on their families as they age, and often rely on wheelchairs and specialist medical equipment.
2019 Kielder activity short break project
Funding from the Crerar Trust contributed to an activity holiday for 17 families - 124 individuals - during the October school break. The trip provides an opportunity for families to relax and have fun together in a safe and organised environment, before returning to their care routine.
Each family stayed for up to 4 nights and, for many, it was the first time they have been able to enjoy a holiday together. The families often find it difficult to secure a suitable venue, transport and activities that meet the needs of their able-bodied children and their child with disabilities.
Throughout the year, Charlie House offers a range of activities to develop positive relationships, especially between siblings.
Calvert Kielder, where the activity break is based, is fully equipped for children of all abilities, so they can play together more easily and try new things. For parents, it's time together spent with families like theirs - time spent as a "normal" family and without judgement.
Outdoor activities often seem out of reach for children with disabilities, so for their parents the activity break is a chance to focus on what their child can do - even zipping through trees in a harness!