Guest blog by Laura Ashton-Booth, Digital Marketing and Engagement Officer at Family Fund
On a daily basis I get to read messages from parents and carers about how Family Fund has made a difference to their lives, it’s definitely something to get up for in a morning.
Family Fund is the UK’s largest charity providing grants for families raising disabled or seriously ill children and young people. Last year, we provided 88,119 grants or services worth over £33 million to families across the UK.
One of my favourite things is travelling around the UK to meet the families we have helped. I visited Mohammed Yahya and his family at their home in Keighley and saw first hand how the trampoline we had provided had been a massive help. I definitely had a lump in my throat when his dad said “We just want to put a smile on his face and as a parent there’s only so much we can do.” Check out our video about what we do.
Family Fund believes that all families raising disabled or seriously ill children and young people should have the same opportunities as others. I get to see the impact of how that happens every day. We focus our work on families on low incomes and look at all conditions against our own criteria.
My work on the marketing and communications team centres around all things digital, including social media, the website, and curating our bloggers. It’s vital that we amplify the voices and stories of our families, as when it comes to supporting others through child disability we know there is no better authority than parents, and other parents definitely benefit from discussing shared experiences.
Like any job it can be difficult, some parents contact us on social media in vulnerable and distressing circumstances, it’s really important to listen to their needs and try to be as supportive as possible. I think our Facebook page offers a great community for parents to discuss the grants we provide as well as topics like the effects of receiving a diagnosis, being tired all the time, or how difficult it can be to get your child to eat.
The grants we help with can vary over a wide range of items, such as washing machines, sensory toys, family breaks, bedding, tablets, furniture, outdoor play equipment, clothing and computers. It can be a struggle financially, emotionally and physically for families raising a disabled or seriously ill child, and these grants help break down many of the barriers families face, improving their quality of life and easing the additional daily pressures.
I feel privileged to work for an organisation that supports these families, and I get to see that support in action. Family Fund wants to reach more and more families every year, and the part I play helps make that happen.
Find out how to apply and download a pack – https://www.familyfund.org.uk/faqs/how-do-we-apply
I’m always on the look out for new bloggers, if you’re interested in taking part or want more info email me at firstname.lastname@example.org