Category Archives: Events

Dorchester Christmas Disco Success

Sir E. Bear

Sir E. Bear

Cerebra recently held a Christmas Disco at the Broadmayne Village Hall in Dorchester.

Children who attended the event were treated to special appearances from Cerebra’s mascot Sir E. Bear and a very special guest: Santa Claus himself!

Santa made himself busy greeting all the guests to the party and even made sure that every child had their very own present.

As well as being able to show off their best dance moves, there was also a festive raffle and other games.

Cerebra Regional Officer Lilly Fahey who organised the event said: “I’m glad that everyone enjoyed the party and would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who attended.”

You can keep up to date with all of the latest events we are holding on our What’s On pages.

Families Enjoy Bristol Ice Skating Session

KaiWe invited families to take part in an inclusive ice skating session in Bristol.

Families in Bristol recently enjoyed a day on the temporary ice at the At-Bristol Science Centre.

The special session allowed families who are members of the charity to have a free afternoon on the ice in a safe environment with some great equipment including “penguins” and “bananas” that were on hand to make sure there was no slipping, just plenty of sliding!

There was a special appearance of charity mascot Sir E. Bear who braved the ice himself to show everyone how it’s done!

Cerebra Regional Officer Kate Hedger who organised the event was very pleased with how much of a success the day was: “There were lots of smiling faces all around. I’m glad everyone enjoyed!” she said.

Cerebra hold many events throughout the year around the country. You can find out about upcoming events here.

Here are some of the pictures from the day:

Jessica Earns Child of Courage Award

Jessica at the Pride of Essex Awards

Jessica at the Pride of Essex Awards

Jessica Taylor is named Child of Courage at the Pride of Essex Awards.

We were very pleased to hear that Jessica Taylor has been honoured at the Pride of Essex Awards.

Jessica was given the Child of Courage Award at the ceremony which took place on 25th November.

Jessica’s is well known by Cerebra and our relationship with her began when mum Carolyn approached the Cerebra Innovation Centre (CIC) with a very important puzzle to solve! Jessica is reliant on an oxygen tank, having to carry one with her at all times which severely limited her independence and meant that she had to have an adult with her at all times to carry it.

The CIC adapted a trunki suitcase for Jessica to be able to carry her oxygen tank with her which has meant that Jessica can look forward to doing everything that other children enjoy.

As well as a trophy Jessica, received a cheque for £1,000 which will be used to buy her two pieces of much needed equipment that will help her development.

The family will also very kindly be donating to the CIC so that they can reach out to even more children like Jessica.

“Ross and the guys at the CIC do a superb job and I know Jess would have struggled to become as independent as she now is without their help so it’s great to be able to send a little back to help someone else along life’s road,” Carolyn said.

This isn’t the first time Jessica’s courage has been recognised with an award. She was recently given a Cerebra Children’s Award along with her sister Bethany who has been there for Jessica through everything. Their story can be found here.

Cattle Country Adventure Park Trip

slide mainFamilies enjoy a great day out at Cattle Country Adventure Park.

Cerebra’s network of Regional Officers organise many events throughout the year from our Parent/ Carer Forums where practical support and advice is given, to fun days out for all the family.

Our most recent event was arranged by one of our Regional Officers, Kate Hedger and involved a trip to Cattle Country Adventure Park in Gloucester.

Twenty eight lucky families were given tickets to get into the park for free and enjoy all of the facilities including the indoor play barns, trampolines and ice skating.

Of course, no trip to a farm park would be complete without encountering some of the animals and the day certainly didn’t disappoint with the children getting to meet guinea pigs, ducks and even reindeer!

You can keep up to date with Cerebra’s upcoming events on our What’s On pages.

Here are some lovely pictures from the day:

PenCRU Family Fun Day

The Peninsula Cerebra Research Unit for Childhood Disability Research hold family fun day at Pennywell Farm in Devon.

The Peninsula Cerebra Research Unit for Childhood Disability Research (PenCRU) recently held their annual family fun day at Pennywell Farm in Devon.

The event was organised in order to thank the unit’s Family Faculty which is made up of all the families who have been involved in the research that the unit carries out. The day was a huge success and PenCRU wanted to thank everyone who took part, especially the unit’s very own Chris Morris.

Chris “volunteered” to take part in a cream pie challenge which saw many of the children who were in attendance queue up to make sure he was well and truly covered in pie! The staff at PenCRU even made sure there was video evidence of the challenge which can be seen below. It was all for a good cause however with Chris choosing to donate sponsorship raised through the challenge to Cerebra and our work.

The PenCRU unit aims to carry out research that is relevant to families with disabled children and is there to respond to questions from families about therapies and health services for all children and young people affected by disability.

Child of Courage

Josh113 year old Joshua Nurse has been nominated for a Child of Courage award.

We are thrilled that Josh has been nominated for the Child of Courage Award as part of the Carmarthen Journal’s annual Community Hero Awards. The winner will be announced at a ceremony on 26th September 2014.

Josh was born with a condition called Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum, a rare condition.  It means that Josh is missing all the connective tissue that links the right and left hemispheres of his brain, which has resulted in Josh having severe learning disabilities.  He has poor concentration and can be easily distracted, has problems with balance that can often make him sick and, as he’s gotten older, has developed more severe autistic tendencies.

It took a long time before it was recognised that Josh had a problem, but when Josh was finally diagnosed his parents didn’t know where to turn – “Eventually the doctor said ‘your child will be severely disabled.  We came out of the hospital in one hell of a state. But we learned very quickly that we had to cope somehow.”

Josh’s family got in touch with Cerebra and we’ve been there for the Nurse family throughout Josh’s life with advice, support and information. Our grants scheme helped to pay for special sensory toys for Josh to aid and improve his development as well as a touch screen computer; the family have also stayed at our holiday home, Vallecchia, in Pembrokeshire.

Josh has also been a great help to the charity when we’ve needed him – he has drawn the winning tickets in our summer and winter raffles, presented cheques to our lottery winners and posed for photos for charity publicity. Some of you may recognise Josh who helped us celebrate our 10th birthday a few years ago. He is such a pleasure to be with and he has touched the hearts of everyone who has met him.

Josh’s mum Julie and dad Darriel, as well as the rest of the family, have worked hard to give Josh a full and rewarding life and Josh is a credit to them. Josh needs to be kept active and to have a routine that he is familiar with and has a team of people who help do just that – through school, support groups and respite care.

Although he’s limited with what exercise he can do, he enjoys being in the water and is a keen member of the Salmon Club. Josh loves music – especially dance music – and sings and dances to Calvin Harris in his room. He also gets the chance to dance at a Zumba class through school.

Josh has a great fascination with technology and likes nothing better than spending time looking at equipment in Curry’s/PC World. The staff in the Carmarthen branch have got to know Josh and earlier this year took the casing off a washing machine and covered the workings with Perspex so that Josh could spend a happy few hours working out where all the wires and pipes went!

Life has been even more tough for Josh in recent times as his mum and dad have both battled with ill health. Darriel has endured 5 spinal operation, which have all failed, leaving him in continuous pain and his mum Julie has been receiving treatment for a brain tumour. On top of this Josh is making the difficult transition to teenage years and secondary school, where he has settled in well.

All of these circumstances and uncertainties would be difficult for any child but for Josh, who relies on routine and stability, it has been extra hard. He is a sensitive, loving boy who is coping really well and is determined to enjoy his life despite his difficulties.

The whole family are a pleasure to know and everyone at Cerebra is is so proud of Josh who shows such great courage in overcoming the problems that he faces. We are keeping our fingers crossed for Josh at  the ceremony on Friday – we’ll let you know how he gets on.

Family Fun from Circus Starr

CircusA wonderful time was had by families in Sheffield recently at one of our Cerebra day’s out.

Thanks to Circus Starr families in Sheffield had the chance to enjoy a fun-filled day out, including hilarious antics from everyone’s favourite clown, Nicolino, ever-more daring Chinese Pole and Aerial Strap performances from the fabulous Serik Brothers as well as spectacular knife balancing acts from the mesmerising Miss Lara.

Circus Starr is a touring circus troupe boasting world-class, professional artists from across the globe. It was first founded in 1987 to help raise much needed funds for local charities whilst providing free seats for thousands of disadvantaged, disabled or vulnerable children.

Cerebra regional support officer Lynne Bowker organised the event, giving families the opportunity to enjoy something special.

“Taylor and Alice look like they had a great time,” she told us. “Their dad also happened to be the Magicians Apprentice and was even more excited than they were!”

Thanks to your donations we’re able to organise events like this. Keep an eye out for future days out.