Team Bea

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The Living By Giving Trust were privileged to be part of ‘Team Bea’ – a project we took on to assist Baby Bea and her family through various forms of respite. Sadly, Beatrice passed away shortly after her first birthday – four years ago this month. more-emma

Those who knew Baby Bea and who saw the loving care she received from her family were inspired and enriched. As part of her legacy, Project ‘Team Bea’ now provides a platform to advise and enable any potential volunteers who want to undertake (Living by Giving Trust) charity approved work – to date, this has enabled numerous volunteers to provide respite for disabled children and adults around the UK and Europe.

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One volunteer utilised our Project ‘Team Bea,’ so she could join a group providing respite for disabled and sick children in Lourdes, France. Following her experience, she changed her whole life direction and is now a paediatric (children’s) nurse.

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As part of the project we asked our volunteer to write about her experience. We believe her words are a perfect tribute to the legacy of Beatrice…

When asked to put into words,
Why I wanted to become a children’s nurse,
I found it almost impossible,
It’s an answer you can’t rehearse.

To some it seems quite strange,
A concept they can’t understand,
Why you would want to get up at 5am,
And be someone’s constant helping hand.

But maybe this is because,
The magic just cant be seen,
The moments shared with the children,
To you, on which they lean.

By taking disabled children to Lourdes,
I found my reason to live,
I went from lost and unknowing,
To wanting to nurse so I could give.

Their eyes, they tell a story,
If you look deep enough you can see,
Their little hands that always fit yours,
Whatever their size may be.

The acceptance of their futures,
And bright outlook they always show,
However dark & short it may seem,
An on looker would never know.

For, however sick & poorly they feel,
They always put up a fight,
Showing you how precious life is,
They push with all their might.

They push to see another day,
To touch the lives of many,
As anyone lucky enough to meet them,
Would lovingly give their last penny.

So, to those who ask me to explain,
Why I want to become a nurse,
I’ve decided to ask them this question,
That, I can rehearse.

Why would you not jump at the honour,
Of being that helping hand,
To a child whose body is so sick,
But whose heart you can understand?

Their time on earth is precious,
So whatever you manage to give,
Is a purpose to your life,
That gives you the reason to live.

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If you are interested to find out more of what we do please check out our website www.livingbygivingtrust.com or if you have any ideas and would like an information pack please contact us at contact@livingbygivingtrust.com

Many people have great ideas for positive things they would like to offer to our society – the Living by Giving Trust provides the foundation for people to blossom and has endless potential.

To find out more about Beatrice’s Story, please check out our special page.

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Xavier Project – Library Up and Running

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The library that we supported is now up and running. Here Ed Page, Director and Founder tells us a little more:

“We had the opening ceremony a couple of weeks ago and it is now being used round the clock. We have two members of staff running it and a couple of volunteers who have come over from England. The volunteers have broadened the aims of the project by setting up an art class which we hope will run for most of the year. You can see some of the art in one of the pictures!

It is very exciting to have it up and running so thanks again for your contribution. We received some additional support from a school in England called Concord College which means the project is secure for a longer period of time and also that we are able to run more activities there. Later in the year we will run a monitoring exercise to see how many children have been using the library and how they are benefitting from it.”
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Millie’s hot tub is a resounding success

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IMG-20140530-WA0010_resizedWe are really pleased to announce that the Living by Giving Trust has been able to facilitate the donation of a hot tub for Millie, and are very grateful to HotSpring World for their donation. Thank you to Terri Betts for organising and coordinating this. The Trust have worked with Millie and her family for a number of years, and are so pleased that the hot tub is already giving Millie such relief from her constant pain. You can still help us support Millie, by reading more here or donating here.

For more on this story, please read the press release below.

Press Release:

HotSpring World delighted Millie’s hot tub is a resounding success

After receiving a letter from the Living by Giving Trust , a Trust designed to enhance the living qualities of the less fortunate, HotSpring World has donated one of their products to a little girl with a big heart.

Millie is nine years old and is from Milton Keynes. A few years ago, she was diagnosed with metachromatic leukodystrophy (MLD). A genetic condition, MLD is extremely rare. It is thought only one in 40,000 people are afflicted with it. It affects nerves, muscles, organs and even behaviour. The life expectancy of MLD sufferers ranges between 10 and 15 years of age.

Living by Giving’s current project is ‘Young People New Experiences’. In Millie’s case, the charity’s aim was to give her an opportunity to live comfortably, without the constant pain that is a symptom of the condition.

In the months before the appeal to HotSpring World, Millie’s parents took her to a hydrotherapy centre near their home. The results were amazing. Having seemingly lost the ability to smile, once in the water her beautiful grin had returned to her face. The feeling of weightlessness that the hot tub provided gave Millie a welcome respite from the constant discomfort she felt being strapped into a wheelchair. In order to give Millie this enjoyment on a day to day basis, Living by Giving acted and HotSpring World responded.

The story doesn’t end there, either. The hot tub Millie received was initially put up as a prize in a competition they were running with a publication called What Pool & Hot Tub. The winner, a lady named Hayley Turner, was not able to claim her prize. Hayley has a daughter herself that suffers from cerebral palsy, and has seen the wonders hydrotherapy can do. After hearing of the appeal, Hayley was adamant she wanted the hot tub to be donated to Millie. She went on to say ‘I think it’s great that this charity are seeking help for someone that really needs and deserves it’

Millie’s story has touched so many people along the way. The chairman of the Living by Giving Trust, Matt Betts said: ‘We were really pleased to be able to facilitate the donation of a hot tub for Millie, and are very grateful to HotSpring World for their donation. The Trust have worked with Millie and her family for a number of years, and are so pleased that the hot tub is already giving Millie such relief from her constant pain.’

This is a sentiment that was echoed by HotSpring World. Lynda Smart stated ‘we are absolutely delighted to help Millie in her long battle against MLD. Knowing the benefits hydrotherapy has on conditions such as Millie’s, we are proud to have contributed such a worthwhile asset to her life.

‘Hearing the struggles she has to go through on a daily basis, and the efforts her parents and carers go to in order to ensure she is as comfortable as possible, we hope that this hot tub will make all of their lives a little easier.

The Frontline Homeless Soup Run Group

The Living by Giving Trust has recently purchased vital equipment to ensure that a Soup Run for London homeless was able to continue it’s good work.

The Frontline Homeless Soup Run Group has been running for over twenty years simply by the volunteering and goodwill of local people in Stamford Hill, North London who make sandwiches, tea, coffee, soup, etc for homeless people in central London every Saturday evening.

Recently the majority of the Group’s equipment was lost or stolen and they had no way of continuing with no budget to buy replacements until the Living by Giving Trust stepped in. It meant that the group could successfully serve the homeless during the Christmas period (some of our photos can be seen below).

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The Living by Giving Trust has has agreed to award ASF a grant of £300 for a young graduate who is currently volunteering in Dachau. Roy Scivyer is working for a year with the group called Action Reconciliation Service for Peace (Aktion Sühnezeichen Friedensdienste or ASF).

From Roy: “Gemany is the first nation to have undergone a formal process of reconciliation with its past. For the first time people were held to account for their actions during conflict, and other nations saw in defeat a new opportunity for a nation to grow. There were more questions than answers (How do you put a conventional jail term on someone responsible for thousands of peoples’ deaths?) but the process of Vergangenheisbewaeltigung, of coming to terms with the past, was overall a healthy one.

One initiative in the post war period was Action Reconciliation Service for Peace, or ARSP, an organisation formed by the Evangelical Church of Germany in 1958. The aim was to send young Germans to nations affected by Nazi crimes, such as the Netherlands and Yugoslavia, in order to rebuild those places destroyed years earlier. This simple act of atonement has led to over 180 volunteers in countries across Europe working in projects to learn about the practical implications of reconciliation and to work towards a non violent way of resolving past conflicts.

By working at Dachau on behalf of ARSP, I hope to become part of this movement for reconciliation. I also hope to discover how Britain can also come to terms with its past. Sixty years of decline on the world stage has left Britain with a rose tinted view of WW2 as the glory days, as well as a national obsession with the war. Just go to any football match and you’ll hear theme tunes from every 1960s war film you can imagine. A national dialogue akin to that envisioned in Germany and in post Communist nations would not be a bad idea.

In the next year, perhaps I’ll learn something about myself and my own ideas of reconciliation, as well as something of living in a different culture.”

You can learn about the charity and read Roy’s excellent blog by visiting: http://www.asf-in-dachau.blogspot.com/ and see Roy’s entry about us.

Cycle ride to Lourdes

Congratulations to Patrick Noble, Matthew Sharrock & their support team (Alex Turvey, James Walden, Dail Maudsley) who took up the formidable challenge of cycling from London to Lourdes (a distance of approximately 600 miles in 6 days) to raise money for the Glanfield Children’s Group and the Derian House. Please view our Projects page for more information.

After arriving on 20 August, they immediately started work in the Glanfield Children’s Group for the whole week.

Well done to them for this amazing achievement.

Photos (c) Dail Maudsley