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HELPING

CHILDREN

THROUGHOUT

THE

UK

We have now purchased an Eyegaze for a SEN school in Birmingham.


The Eyegaze device is essentially a traditional tablet, however instead of using your hands or a mouse to navigate the screen, your eyes do the scrolling.

This is an invaluable piece of equipment for the school.


The school has outstanding purpose-built facilities and highly trained, enthusiastic, and committed staff.

This combination enables them to provide the specialised individual programmes required by their pupils.


It caters for 229 pupils aged between 2 and 25 years. Some pupils have additional difficulties including sensory impairment, learning difficulties, communication difficulties or complex medical conditions.

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Their nursery accommodates up to 12 children, they have separated Primary and Secondary Departments, and their Sixth Form programme offers a variety of academic and vocational qualifications. This helps prepare students for life post 19 by offering valuable extra-curricular activities, work experiences and delivering key life skills as part of the overall curriculum. September 2013 saw them launch a vocational programme for students aged 19-25, which has been developed in partnership with University College Birmingham.


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Lilly-Mays car seat with magnetic crelling harness


Lilly-May now has her car seat with magnetic crelling harness.

Lilly-May has little understanding of danger and can escape from normal car seats with standard seatbelts  

This car seat with crelling harness, will help keep Lily may safe and secure when travelling in the car or on the school bus,


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Maddie’s new Electric Wheelchair



Maddie’s quality of life will be so much better now she has the independence of this new electric wheelchair.

Sadly, with Maddie’s illness causing muscle weakness, Maddi was so restricted with her manual chair, having to depend on others to get her about


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Acheeva bed for a SEN School

We have now managed to purchase one of the Acheeva beds for a SEN school in Birmingham.

They have outstanding purpose-built facilities and highly trained, enthusiastic, and committed staff. This combination enables them to provide the specialised individual programmes required by their pupils.

The school caters for 229 pupils aged between 2 and 25 years. Some pupils have additional difficulties including sensory impairment, learning difficulties, communication difficulties or complex medical conditions.

The Acheeva Learning Station is designed to help children with special needs learn how to move independently. These include those with cerebral palsy, autism, Down’s syndrome, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries and many other conditions.

Acheeva are height adjustable mobile therapy beds that help children maintain a functional position throughout the day. It provides support for those who cannot move around easily due to illness, injury, surgery, or disability.


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Toby Richardson

Please click image above to follow Toby's incredible journey

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Mark Masons Hall benevolent fund


Thank you to Paul, Gary and everybody involved with the Mak Masons Hall benevolent fund for the wonderful donation of £1000.00


2024-02-16-tony-4Toby with his new NRG Wheelchair

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Stanz for Alex


We have now purchased Alex a Standz: Abduction stander complete with all accessories.


This will help Alex tremendously as it will help him with his legs and hips to help him maintain some of his strength,.



Alex will also be able to track movements and objects when in the standing frame at school.


Morrisons Victoria




A very big Thank you David Gallop.

Thank you for allowiing

our volunteer into your store

to raise funds

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The Grand Sovereign's Care for Children Fund

We would like to say a special thank you to everybody at The Grand Sovereign's Care for Children Fund, for their generous donation of £2,500.00 to assist with the running costs and upkeep of our 3 holiday homes at Golden Sands, Mablethorpe and Butlins, Skegness


Thank you to all involved.


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Update on Teddy


Teddy, (our latest autism dog) is still undergoing his training and coming along very well.

He has already formed a special bond with Oakley.

We will keep you updated on his progress.


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A Jiraffe Jenx Standz Standing Frame for A 6 year old boy


He was diagnosed at birth with nonketotic hyperglycinaemia (NKH)1. dislocated hips,

infrequent bladder emptying (which causes pain), severe development delay, he has frequent multiple seizures, is gastrostomy fed, and is nonverbal.

He has a significant metabolic condition with a very limited movement and would greatly benefits from a standing frame to ensure that he retains the best possible position he can for his legs and hips to maintain some semblance of strength.

The standing frame we are hoping to supply him with is a Standz: Abduction stander complete with all accessories.

This is a versatile standing system offering Prone or Supine standing that accommodates abducted or neutral leg positioning for children. Inspired by the clinical benefits of abducted standing and created alongside therapists and carers all

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over the world ensures the perfect combination of clinical positioning with simplicity of use. Leg length discrepancy is easily accommodated by the individual control for knee and foot positioning, and all adjustments are tool

free to enable quick and effective clinical postural adjustments. With an extensive range of accessories, Standz can accommodate children with a range of postural requirements.

The total price including accessories is £3,612

1NKH is a disorder characterized by abnormally high levels of a molecule called glycine in the body (hyperglycinemia). The excess glycine builds up in tissues and organs, particularly the brain. Affected individuals have serious neurological problems. (NKH) is a genetic condition that can lead to serious neurological problems, coma, and death. “Hyperglycinemia” refers to abnormally high levels of a molecule, glycine. The word “nonketotic” distinguishes NKH from certain other health conditions that can cause increased glycine. The condition is also sometimes called "glycine encephalopathy," meaning a disease that damages the brain.



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We are seeking £9,291.50 towards supplying a Top End Eliminator NRG Carbon Hybrid Racing Chair for a young child named Toby aged 13 who has Functional Neurological Disorder (FND), Spinal Cord Injury (SPI) and still has 30% Cancer wrapped around his spinal cord.

In June of 2021, Toby's world was turned upside down. Initially complaining of backache, he was referred for physiotherapy.

Toby loved sports, especially rugby, playing in his local Under 11s team, so aches and bruises were nothing unusual. However, a couple of weeks later, Toby struggled to stand, his condition rapidly deteriorated and within a short time, had completely lost control of his lower body and was rushed to Great Western Hospital in Swindon. An emergency MRI scan revealed a previously undetected tumour, which had developed in and around Toby’s spinal cord and spanned two-thirds the length of his spine, he was immediately blue-lighted to the John Radcliffe Hospital for specialist attention where surgeons took the decision to perform emergency surgery.

This involved removing sections of vertebrae from Toby’s spine to relieve the pressure on the spinal cord, after the gruelling 8-hour operation, they removed 70% of the tumour but felt that the remaining 30% was too risky to touch. After the operation, Toby spent 3 months’ rehabilitation in hospital and has defied the original long-term prognosis that he would never regain the use of his legs. Toby’s determination and mental courage combined with excellent care from his family and hospital staff, saw him gradually rebuild his strength, everyone in his neuro, rehab teams and family were absolutely blown away when he took his first steps. All concerned were incredibly moved with his positive mental attitude and mind set.

As soon as Toby arrived back home, he immediately started searching to see what sports were best suited to him. As he had previously played rugby the obvious choice to start with was wheelchair rugby, he then joined his local club which folded and now plays competitively for the Solent Sharks and is also in the team GB youth development program.

He then received a zoom call from Nathan Maguire, the world-renowned British wheelchair racer who has won multiple medals at both the 2018 and 2021 World Para Athletic, European Championships, and has also won 400 mixed class races at multiple British Athletics Champion ships. Whilst chatting, Nathan showed Toby some of his gold medals, that zoom call truly changed Toby’s life as it drove him to take up the sport himself, he has since raced and competed in regular local competitions and now holds 2 junior gold medals for Wiltshire in both the 100m and 200m wheelchair races. His main goal is to compete at the next Commonwealth games.

He is registered with the Avon Youth League and is trained by a professional Para coach who is aiming to take Toby to the next level.

Toby is currently using a club owned race training wheelchair constructed from metal which because of its weight and design affects his ability to reach his potential top speeds.

Toby’s long-term aspiration is to become part of the GB Paralympian Team and participate in racing wheelchair events around the world, to help him achieve his aims we have agreed to help fund a Top Eliminator NRG Racing Wheelchair which is Top End’s fastest, lightest, stiffest, and most responsive ride available designed for elite racers seeking to be at the top of the podium. A carbon fibre main frame provides increased tensile and yield strength, giving racers a smooth ride and controlled handling while the 200-gram full carbon fork features an aerodynamic design that flows into the headtube, creating clean lines for a sleek appearance. A tailored and fitted hybrid cage gives athletes the ability to fine tune their positioning, so they can optimize their power.

The total cost for this is £9,291.50. This chair is designed to take Toby’s career into adulthood and the only thing that will need changing would be the seating as he grows.


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James's Heathfield Red Posture Chair

Thank You Gary Waterfall CBE DL FRAeS AND the Red Arrows Trust for msakingbit possible for James to have a Heathfield Posture Chair.

James has myotonic dystrophy which he has had from birth, He has a chair at school which has really helps him with his posture and to sit in the correct position.

It has adjustable chair arms which make him more Independant when transferring from the chair to standing and when sitting down.

This will also alleviate his muscles.


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Meet Teddy

Teddy is our latest autism dog, undergoing his training to work with Oakley, Oakleys conditions are, Severe sensory processing disorder, Atopic keratitis, Autism spectrum disorder, Severe anxiety, separation anxiety, has difficulty maintaining postures and limited physical endurance, difficulty with some fine motor skills, social communication difficulties,  Severe difficulties sleeping and Severe eczema.


Thank You

NIGHTSKY FOUNDATION

For making it possible for us to purchase a young girl who has cerebral palsy and epilepsy, her very own eyegaze system and software, this will make a tremendous enhancement to her schooling and day to day life

Holidays and Respite 2023

We still have some dates available at our holiday homes at Havens Golden Sands Holiday Park, Mablethorpe and Butlins Skegness during September October and November.

If you, or you know anybody that needs respite and they fall into our criteria please get in touch, we only have limited availability.


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An updated photograph of

Bear

One of the assistance dogs

we have provided

One Stop

Anselm Road, North Shields

who raised £80.00 by holding a Raffle

Fayha and Huzaif

who kindly donated £25.00

that was given to them for Ede

THANK YOU



Ashview Nursing Home

Thank you to the staff and residents of Ashview Nursing Home, in Widford, Ware

The photographs were taken at their king charles coronation fundraising party, which was a big highlight for the residents and staff.

The tea party was a great success and the residents really enjoyed dressing up for it.

The photographs include Emma, Amelia, Julie, Brian, Rene, Tracy, Eileen, Jane, and nan.

The staff raised £50.00 from the dress up day.

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SCHOOL VISIT TO THE NATIONAL SPACE CENTRE LEICESTER

"As we approach the end of term I just wanted to pass on my HUGE thanks to you and the Night Sky Foundation for the funding to take our students to the Space Centre. They had a fantastic day and came back really enthused about science and space in particular (as did the teachers and support staff who accompanied them)."


Below are just a few quotes from the students;

    The rocket ship was huge and the controls for the Mars robot were amazing.

    The planetarium show was so realistic and amazing.

    I liked the rockets on the second floor.  There was more fun stuff on 3rd, 4th and 5th level and it was 144 steps to the top!!

    It was really interactive and there was so much to see.

    The gift shop was amazing and I enjoyed spending my voucher.

    There were lots of new facts that I learnt about space and the planetarium was outstanding.

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S.E.N Event


Thank you to everybody that turned up to our S.E.N Event, As you can see from the photo's, we all had a wonderful day


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Sensory Equipment for Frankie

Frankie, who was prematurely born and has Down Syndrome, Spinal Hyperextension, Hyper-Mobile Joints, and Lower Muscle Tone.

Because Frankie has a diagnosis of Down’s Syndrome, she is fully assisted with all aspects of her self-care and daily living at home with her mother. Frankie is under the care of a pediatrician, social services, GP, health visitor, physiotherapist and is on a waiting list for further investigation around her swallowing via Speech and Language Therapy.

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Because of her conditions Frankie must have a trained Portage home visitor each week to share ideas with her mother on how to stimulate her development and to discuss play and learning activities. Together they decide how to break down certain skill into small, easily taught steps, which are then practised between visits.

Because of the above her occupational therapist highly recommends that Frankie has a safe and peaceful space where she can have sensory inputs.

We have been provided with a list from her occupational therapist of the specialised sensory equipment that would best suit Frankie’s needs.

The list contains a total of seven items and the costing for theses including VAT and carriage is £1318.37.

They are a translucent shape kit, a light up table, a toddler crawling soft play, a sensory soft play, a mirrored tuff mat, a diffraction box and a learn well diffraction tube drum.

What are the benefits of sensory rooms? Children gain access to appropriate sensory stimulation and their bodies respond appropriately to their stimulation. Sensory rooms can enhance learning through occupational therapy (OT), which engages different areas of the brain, leading to information retention. Time is a sensory room helps children with their visual, auditory, and tactile processing, as well as fine and gross motor skills. By providing a sense of calm and comfort, sensory rooms help children learn to self-regulate their behaviours, which ultimately improves focus. Sensory play can help to strengthen brain development, enhance memory and ability to complete more complex tasks, as well as helping to improve hand to eye coordination.


We are seeking help with the funding for the electric wheelchair for Jensen.

Jensen is 9 years old and was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy at 9 months.

He is a full-time wheelchair user and currently has a manual wheelchair, he is dependent on other people to push him to wherever he needs to go, it is becoming frustrating for him, especially at school because most of the time he is on his own while his friends are playing out, he so much wants to interact with his friends and an electric wheelchair would give him the opportunity to do so in addition to giving him a new lease of life His Christmas wish this year is to have an electric wheelchair that he so desperately needs.

Having an electric wheelchair would allow him the opportunity to interact and play with his friends

The cost of the Wheelchair is £1649.00

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Sensory Equipment for a young girl called Rhona.

Rhona has Sensory Process Disorder and a learning disability. Her cognitive development is currently 8-20 months. She is now just over 5 years old so has quite a significant learning delay. Rhona cannot communicate her wants and needs, she does not show any indication of knowing her own name and never tries to instigate play with anyone. Rhona likes to jump and throw herself around, she likes to spin and loves flashing lights. Her parents want to create a safe environment in which she can enjoy time getting sensory feedback and exploring her senses to enhance her learning and development.  Rhona has also had to be taken out of her wooden cot as she kept chewing it and getting splinters in her mouth. She was sleeping on a soft play bed but has now outgrown it. She is currently sleeping on a mattress on her bedroom floor.

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To help her be more comfortable and to receive much needed sensory inputs we are hoping to supply her with the sensory items requested and a suitable bed for her to spend her nights in.

The sensory items we have agreed on are a sensory den, sensory lights, a wobble and cushions, vibrating snake, a whizzy dizzy, lycra sheet swing, a mud kitchen, ball pool and a soft play material bed. Some of the sensory items requested are also for outdoor use as Rhona enjoys being in the open air.

The sensory equipment and a suitable bed would cost £2,275.00 to supply.

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A computer for a 14-year-old boy

We are wanting to purchase a computer, printer and computer desk for a young boy who suffers from PTSD and Anxiety

He also suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome which is a form of Autism that is a developmental disorder. Young people with Asperger's Syndrome have a difficult time relating to others socially and their behaviour and thinking patterns can be rigid and repetitive. Because of his condition he also suffers with severe anxiety.

Despite his situation he is very bright, and his memory bank is excellent, unfortunately he does worry and over stress on some aspects of his schoolwork. His care worker and form teacher feel it is fundamentally important that he has a computer set up at home to help with his workload.

HELPING FAMILIES WITH THE COST OF LIVING


There are currently many families facing high levels of child poverty in the UK, and for the first time in almost two decades child poverty has started to rise in absolute terms. Child poverty is associated with a wide range of health-damaging impacts, negative educational outcomes, and adverse long-term social and psychological outcomes. The poor health associated with child poverty limits children's potential and development, leading to poor health and life chances in adulthood.

Due to the very serious situation with the cost of living we are currently receiving an unprecedented amount of requests from families that are not managing. None more so than those with children suffering from a multitude of ailments that must use medical equipment that use electric. Such as power Wheelchairs, Ventilators, Oxygen Concentrators, Infusions, Chair Lifts, Nebulizers, Suction Pumps, Dialysis machines and more. Many of these devices are lifesaving, so the thought of being without them is frightening.

We also assist underprivileged and poverty-stricken families with children living on the borderline. We firmly believe that every child has the right not to feel excluded from normal day to day activities and be able to take part in pursuits that others may see as normal. We supply clothing/school uniforms and items such as iPads and other equipment.

We have decided to make small regular grants to some of the above families finding it difficult to survive. These may be used towards utility bills, food, clothing, school meals and any other concerns they find difficulty in meeting. All families must meet our criteria and provide proof as to why they need assistance, as well as to confirm that the grant will be used for the purpose it was applied for. All families that apply are means tested and must provide evidence of their annual Benefits Award. All grants Awarded will be paid directly into their utility accounts and where possible vouchers for goods required.

We cannot possibly put a figure on this simply because we have never come across the sheer desperation we are finding in these troublesome times. Any grant awarded towards this project would be gratefully appreciated, well received, and fairly distributed.

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Horticultural project based in South Devon

We recently purchased a Mobility Scooter for a horticultural project based in South Devon, we are now seeking funding to help some of the disabled children that regularly visit the site to participate even further by supplying amongst other items, several raised wooden growing beds. This will allow them to be involved with all aspects of planting without having to sit on ground sheets on the floor.

We are also hoping to supply the site with safe to use gardening implements such as trowels, forks, rakes, spades, and watering cans. These are all made from plastic and have no sharp edges, to help keep their tools within easy reach we would also like to supply small tool bags and wellington boots to help navigate the field when muddy.

The project provides space and services for all children, inclusive of those at a disadvantage in some way in society.to learn about plants.

The children are mostly neurodiverse with additional needs.

On site, there is a ramped building and fully accessible toilet and shower, the space is perfect for children to rest and recuperate, it is in a beautiful setting in the heart of rural south Devon, it has an orchard, new strawbale barn and growing spaces.

There is a programme of land and plant therapy and play based activities in the making.

All the trees are planted now on this small, highly productive speck of space, half of the 2 hectares is a border of 1,700 of 11 mixed species, within this there is an orchard of locally sourced fruit trees and community growing spaces for herbs and dye plants.

The project caters for children visiting from several areas including Torquay, Paignton, Brixham, Plymouth, Totness, Dartington, South Brent, Buckfastleigh, Ashburton and are now looking to extend as far afield as Exeter.

Lockdown was incredibly tough on all children, but even more so for those who are clinically vulnerable and have spent very little time outdoors.

This project will give them the opportunity to have the chance to connect with the land, learn about the environment and help sustain their natural world which is invaluable and a treat to see.  

Due to the size and the layout of the site, children who need to use a wheelchair find some parts inaccessible, the Mobility Scooter is an all-terrain chair which will allow them to access the whole site and be able to participate in all activities and projects.

The total cost of the items listed is £3759, we have to date secured £1000 towards this appeal which leaves us with a shortfall of £2759.

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A Computer for Benjamin

We are seeking funding towards the purchasing a computer for Benjamin.

Benjamin is 9 years old, from the Borough of Wirral, he suffers from ASD ADHD ARFID and Dyspraxia, repetitive behaviour and lacks safety awareness and danger, he also has hyper-activity and is very active in play.

He also has difficulty in speaking and answering questions, and gets stuck on words, repeats himself and stutters. He also has no social awareness, and his understanding is very low.

Because of his learning and development, he is behind his peers at school and therefore his mum and teachers would like us to purchase a computer to help with both his school and homework.

They also believe a computer will help with his social skills and help him to feel less isolated, The cost of the computer is £399

Rosemary Assistance Dog

Rosemary has spent the last 5 years predominantly in hospital, she suffers from Autism Spectrum disorder, PTSD, amongst others, her health professionals believe that an assistance dog would give her the opportunity to become more independent and suffer less anxiety which in turn will help her to develop and improve her social skills and ease her into the community without adult support and because she is autistic change and the unknown can be really hard for Rosemary.

Rosemary would like an assistance Autism Dog to help her with her everyday life.

The cost of the assistance dog, including training and ongoing training is £7500.00

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Flamingo Group International (Weston)

We would like to say a big thank you to Holly Kendrick from Flamingo Horticulture at Weston, for choosing Make Them Smile as their nominated charity.

Whilst holding a celebratory event to mark their 40th anniversary they kindly raised money for our charity by way of a raffle with some fantastic prizes.

We wish to thank all the staff and management for raising a staggering £1720. Thank you so much

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ZOE PEARSON

Great Northern Run


Zoe kindly did a sponsored run on the 11th September 2022, Zoe ran in the Great North run (13.1 Miles) and chose our charity to raise funds for.

Zoe raised the fantastic amount of £780.

She did the run in 2 hours and 36 minutes which was absolutely amazing.

Well Done Zoe and thank you Emma for doubling up the amount raised.

Thank you once again from all at Make Them Smile

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Phoenix Day Nursery

Fun Day for

Make Them Smile

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Hydrotherapy for Nicola

We are seeking funding towards twenty physiotherapy and hydrotherapy sessions for a young girl named Nicola aged 10 from Brighton. She has Juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma (JPA) which is a rare childhood brain tumour. In most cases, the tumour is a benign, slow growing tumour that usually does not spread to surrounding brain tissue. Symptoms of a JPA will vary depending upon the size and location of the tumour. Most symptoms result from increased pressure on the brain and include headaches, nausea, vomiting, balance problems and vision abnormalities.

Nicola had to undergo further brain surgery at the renowned Great Ormand Street Hospital in January of this year. Before the procedure she was receiving speech and language therapy but unfortunately her speech has started to slur again.

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To help further her recovery her medical team have decided that Nicola should have physio and hydrotherapy sessions to help with her balance, co-ordination, strength, and various other conditions.

Because of the waiting list and time delay on the NHS it has been decided that the best possible solution for her is to have these sessions booked privately.

Each Hydrotherapy Session costs £90.00, and the cost of each Physio Session is the same. We have agreed to fund 20 sessions of both, which will hopefully place Nicola’s abilities and condition to where they were before her latest operation.

The total cost for this is £3,600.

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Sensory Equipment for Benjamin

We are seeking funding towards the purchasing of sensory equipment for Benjamin aged 9, from the Borough of Wirral, who has Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) which is a developmental disability caused by differences in the brain. People with ASD often have problems with social communication and interaction, and restricted or repetitive behaviours or interests. People with ASD may also have different ways of learning, moving, or paying attention.

He also has Avoidant restrictive food intake disorder, more commonly known as ARFID, is a condition characterised by the person avoiding certain foods or types of food, having restricted intake in terms of overall amount eaten, or both. Someone might be avoiding and/or restricting their intake for several different reasons.

As well as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a condition that affects people's behaviour. People with ADHD can seem restless, may have trouble concentrating and may act on impulse.

Benjamin’s doctor has stated that these conditions cause him to have repetitive behaviour, lack of awareness of safety and surroundings, has hyperactivity which causes him to be very active in play. He also has difficulty in speaking and answering questions, and gets stuck on words, repeats himself and stutters. He also has no social awareness, and his understanding is very low.

Because of the above it has been agreed that the best possible result for Benjamin is for him to have a safe space for his activities using sensory equipment.

Benjamin really benefits from sensory input and relates to his family, friends, and environment much easier. Once he has had a sensory input it makes a massive improvement to his general wellbeing, his speech and sleep patterns. His parents have a spare room that they will be converting into a sensory space and only need the equipment to be supplied to complete it. His doctor, therapist and social worker have put a list of sensory items together that will best suit Benjamin’s needs.

The total cost of the equipment including VAT and carriage is £1,181.46p

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The Breda Nagle Holiday and Respite Home

We are both pleased and proud to be welcoming our first family to our new Respite/holiday home at Butlins Skegness, the Breda Nagle respite holiday home, along with our to respite/holiday homes at Haven’s golden sands in Mablethorpe will allow us to provide holidays and respite for approximately 150 families each year.

All are wheelchair friendly and have been adapted to suit people with a wide variety of disabilities.

Butlins offers a unprecedented range of entertainment to suit all ages, it is wheelchair friendly and everyone can enjoy all it has to offer.Skegness is where the Butlin’s story began. Founded in 1936 by Billy Butlin, it was the UK’s first-ever holiday camp and is just as popular now as it’s always been.

Butlins is situated on the Lincolnshire Coast, 20 miles from Lincoln, wondering why Billy Butlin chose this specific spot? That would be because of the beach! Skegness is home to one of the UK’s finest Blue Flag beaches, with an endless stretch of award-winning golden sand.

Take your pick from the high ropes, climbing wall, go-karts and freefall. And when the weather’s not playing ball? There’s loads to do inside including laser tag, bowling, arts and crafts and, of course, our huge Splash Waterworld. Renovated in 2018, the pool features nearly 3000 square metres of fun, with high-speed flumes, racing rapids, a pool for tots and a winding vortex slide that sends you spinning into a giant bowl.


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Tramper TWS Krystal ‘Utility’ Mobility Scooter

We are currently seeking assistance towards the purchase of a Tramper TWS Krystal ‘Utility’ Mobility Scooter for a horticultural project based in South DevonThe project provides space and services for children to learn about plants, in addition to offering services for all children, inclusive of those at a disadvantage in some way in society. The children are mostly neurodiverse with additional needs.On site, there is a ramped building and fully accessible toilet and shower.This space is perfect for children to rest and recuperate. it is in a beautiful setting in the heart of rural south Devon, it has an orchard, new strawbale barn and growing spaces. The area is surrounded by a young woodland with views across hills, and the site is dedicated to increasing biodiversity and human wellbeing. There is a programme of land and plant therapy and play based activities in the making.All the trees are planted now on this small, highly productive speck of space, half of the 2 hectares is a border of 1,700 of 11 mixed species, within this there is an orchard of locally sourced fruit trees and community growing spaces for herbs and dye plants.The project caters for children visiting from several areas including Torquay, Paignton, Brixham, Plymouth, Totness, Dartington, South Brent, Buckfastleigh, Ashburton and are now looking to extend as far afield as Exeter.Lockdown has been incredibly tough on all children, but even more so for those who are clinically vulnerable and have spent very little time outdoors.This project will give them the opportunity to have the chance to connect with the land, learn about the environment and help sustain their natural world which is invaluable and a treat to see.  Due to the size and the layout of the site, children who need to use a wheelchair find some parts inaccessible, the TWS Krystal ‘Utility’ Mobility Scooter is an all-terrain chair which will allow them to access the whole site and be able to participate in all activities and projects. The cost of the mobility scooter including VAT and carriage is £6,500. £2,500 of funding has been achieved which leaves a shortfall of £4,000.

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Cruze's Sensory Room

After many months of hard work and preparation, Cruz's mum and dad have now got the sensory room that cruise so desperately needed. The sensory room is fitted out with a sensory light up table, fibre optic tails, a sensory carpet, a sensory rug, a ball pool, sift play equipment, sensory mirror, sensory chair, and sensory toys.

This space will be life changing for Cruz, his siblings, and his parents.


Thank you Everybody



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Co-op Burston Road Bow


A big thank you to Kim, all the staff and their customers for raising a fantastic £130.00 when they held a non uniform fundraising day.


Thank you everybody! your all amazing


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ZOLTON'S POWER WHEELCHAIR

The power wheelchair has now been purchased, another young person and his family's lives made better.

Thank you Provinsial Walsh for making up the shortfall.



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NICO HEARING DOG

It is with the generosity of our supporters, we have now managed to purchase and have trained the hearing dog for Nico.

Nico and her dog will continue with their training for a while to come but he is already a great asset to her by helping with her anxiety and allowing Nico to have the confidence to be the person she wishes to be.

THANK YOU EVERYBODY


Superhero Day at Toby Carvery

Thank you to Kelly Dove and the superhero team at Toby Carvery, Hemel Hempstead,

As you can see from the photos, all the staff dressed up as superheroes and raised a staggering £309.70 for Make Them Smile. I wonder what the customers thought?

looks like you all had an amazing day.

You are certainly our superheroes … Thank you

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Scott’s Beard Shave

Thank you to Scott Webber at Tesco Express, Shirehampton Road, Bristol Scott has had a beard for over12 years now and kindly held a sponsored beard shave, the event raised £100.00 for Make Them Smile. Will his family recognise him…Thank you Scott, you’re a superstar

S-Max Sella Stairclimber

S-Max Sella Stairclimber with integrated armrest and seat for a 15-year-old boy.He is a full-time wheelchair user due to a progressive muscle weakness and joint stiffness disease, the stairlifter will allow him access to areas with greater ease.

We are aiming to raise £5000.00 for this project

Sheffield Children’s Hospital Rooftop Helipad

We are proud to support the appeal to move the helipad from Weston Park opposite the hospital to the rooftop. A helipad on the roof would mean patients can land and be transferred anytime with flood lighting.

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Our Holiday Homes

The holiday season has come around once again, our adapted holiday homes have kicked the year off to a great start.

We have already started to welcome families, but we do, however, still have some dates available for later this year.

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if you need respite or a holiday or know of a family that need respite or a holiday, and you or they meet our criteria, then please get in touch, or alternatively, complete our holiday application form.

The holiday Homes are wheelchair friendly and fully adapted. (We also welcome well behaved dogs)

Havens Golden Sands is a wheelchair friendly site with great amenities and wonderful staff

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CHRISTMAS TOY APPEAL


This year sadly, due to logistics, we are having to limit our toy appeal within the areas of Boston and the surrounding villages/towns.

If you know of a child needing Santa’s help this Christmas, there is still time to Apply, The closing date is Sunday the 19th of December.

You can apply by telephone, or by sending a message to: trustees@makethemsmile.org.uk, please put “Toy Appeal” as the subject.



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SENSORY ROOM FOR CRUZ

We would like to build a sensory room for a young boy who has congenital heart disease, dysmorphic features, nonverbal autism and has Asperger’s syndrome. At 8 weeks old he needed and had to have open heart surgery. In addition, he has also had to undergo 3 lots of plastic surgery on his feet and still requires more.

He is also due to have a gastrostomy to put a feeding peg in his tummy and also wears orthotic boots. On an average day, he has 7 + meltdowns, he self-harms himself and others. He has a lot of sensory issues, he’s nonverbal so doesn’t communicate, he doesn’t eat or drink and get the right nutrients and the family are desperately hoping that the feeding peg will help. As he is nonverbal, he cannot communicate to explain or show you what he wants, he strikes out and has great difficulty out and about as he doesn’t like noises etc.

A sensory room would be a massive improvement for him and his family as he would have his own sensory space away from his 5 other sibling and mum is hoping that it will help him start to communicate. As there is limited space inside the property, we would need to purchase an outbuilding.

HEARING DOG FOR NICO

We wish to purchase a hearing dog to for a young girl that has become deaf, suffers from Autism, Sensory processing disorder (SPD), Dyslexia, Asthma, IBS and Hypermobility, Severe Anxiety issues and anxiety tics.

When she gets very anxious and overwhelmed it gets her to the point of where she turns mute, especially if she does not know you or you are not a familiar friend or family member. She has tried to overcome her anxiety problems by enrolling at college but unfortunately to no avail.

With the devastating news she is now deaf the family believe that a hearing dog would benefit her immensely by being both her ears and her best friend. In addition to this, her healthcare workers are certain that a hearing dog would also help with her anxiety issues. Having a hearing dog would benefit her in so many ways and will help put some normality into her young life.

Hearing dogs provide both emotional support through companionship, and practical support by alerting deaf people to lifesaving sounds like the

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smoke alarm, and important sounds such as the oven timer, baby monitor and text messages.

Their burgundy coats also signal to the public that they are with a deaf person.

Because barking may not be audible by their deaf owners, hearing dogs are trained to use physical contact to alert people to sounds, they will touch you with their paws or nudge you with their nose and then lead you to the source of the sound.  

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Quantum Stretto Powerchair (Powered Wheelchair)

we are looking to help a family purchase a quantum stretto powerchair for their 13-year-old son who developed a Medulloblastoma which is a high-grade brain tumour that starts in the lower back part of the brain, called the cerebellum. The cerebellum is involved in muscle coordination, balance, and movement.

He has been treated at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital and was an in-patient for several months having received intensive treatment alongside therapy, as a result, ataxia developed as well.

He is now home and making progress with regular access to both physiotherapy and occupational therapy in the community setting. He will, however, continue to have longer term difficulties relating to his mobility. He can walk very short distances with support, but he is not able to walk independently due to being unsteady and at risk of falls. He has reduced core stability and difficulties controlling his arms and legs.

His movements lack fluency and control impacting on all areas of daily living and has had to become dependent on others for many aspects of

care, despite making improvements and progressing well. He has been assessed by a local wheelchair service within his area, however, due to

not having an adapted home .

they are not able to issue/supply a powered wheelchair as he does not meet the criteria. He has been assessed with a powered wheelchair which allows him to confidently access the local community and his school environment with greater ease and more confidence. He can operate the powered chair safely which increases his overall independence. He is not able to self-propel in a standard wheelchair due to fatigue and reduced muscle strength, so a powered chair is his only means of independent mobility outside of the home.

Having a quantum stretto powerchair would increase his self-esteem and sense of wellbeing as it would provide a much-needed opportunity to develop his confidence accessing the local community safely. The family are also in the process of arranging a wheelchair adapted vehicle (WAV) through Motability and are keen to have support with funding this powered wheelchair so that they can ensure the vehicle they chose is compatible.

Please help him to reach his potential and enable him to be the teenage boy he needs to be, due to him having reduced mobility and ataxic movement the quantum stretto powerchair would have a huge impact on his life.




Bear Update (Support Dog)

We are pleased to let you know that after his intense training and a lot of hard work,

“Bear2” has now moved in with the family, he and the children have bonded well and he is now a fully fledged member of the family.


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Oscar Update

Due to your generosity we were able to purchase a Mountbatten Brailler for Oscar.

Oscar’s mum has sent an update on Oscar’s progress.

“The brailler you kindly gifted our family has allowed Oscar to become independent in his learning. He is able to switch on, load the paper and type all by himself. His brailling skills have gone from strength to strength earning several progress certificates from his visual impairment teachers. The brailler has not only allowed him to increase his typing skills but also his reading skills, Oscar can now fluently read braille. Your gift has given Oscar so much freedom and it has been incredible seeing him achieve, we cannot thank you enough for helping, it has without a doubt made a huge difference to Oscar’s life. “