Halloween just got scary

Thank you Chasing Dragonflies for sharing! Hopefully other parents who feel the same wont feel so alone in their thoughts!

Chasing dragonflies

[I didn’t post this blog about Halloween at the time, I suppose to avoid offending anyone or to put a damper on the fun, but reading back on it, it’s certainly worth sharing. It’s not a major worry for me now, and who knows how I’ll feel about it this year, but it’s a classic example of how trauma and grief can distort things.]

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Team 25: Meet the Team

Liz Dukes, Running in memory of Charlie
Liz’s son Charlie was killed aged 8, leaving behind big bother Jack and twin brother Archie.

Our Young Ambassador Kiran
Kiran MistryKiran’s parents divorced when she was 7 months old, so she and her mother moved in with her grandparents. While her mother worked extremely long hours to support the family, Kiran’s grandparents raised her. When she was 7, her Grandma was diagnosed with cancer, and was hospitalised when Kiran was 11. While her Gran was in hospital, Kiran’s Grandfather suffered a stroke and passed away. The day after being told of her husbands death, Kiran’s Nan died. Kiran blamed herself, as her Grandfather had been bending to polish her shoes when he had his stroke.Feeling all alone, having lost both of her main carers in a few days, and blaming herself, Kiran began having fits and regressed to the mental age of a 4 year old, in what doctors felt was an attempt to relive her happiest times.
Now aged 19, Kiran is an intelligent, confident, beautiful young lady applying for universities this year. We couldn’t be more proud to have her as a Young Ambassador, and that she credits Edward’s Trust as helping to get her to where she is now.
“They are absolute god sends to me, I don’t know where I’d be without them. I hope you can give generously so that they can help others like myself, because I know that grief can be a silent killer.”

Heather Derby is running in memory of Dane Peagram:
“Dane was born on my wedding day and despite a difficult start to life fought against the odds to enjoy his early years. He had the ability to light up the room with his smile and I have many happy memories of him growing up alongside my twins. Tragically Dane passed away aged 5 and left his family and friends totally devastated. Edwards Trust supported his Mum and family. I am in awe of the important work this charity does to support bereaved parents and families in Birmingham. I am really proud to pound the streets of Birmingham to raise money to support the amazing work they do! Please give what you can!”

Phil from Hollywood Monster
IMG_7674Phil has previously run for us in the Hollywood Monster mascot outfit because he’s crazy…and because Edward’s Trust supported him and his wife when their baby Ben died. This year he is doing it minus the suit.

Graham Ayres, In Memory of Jamie
Graham’s son Jamie was killed outside school by a drunk driver when he was 5. He was running back to school to fetch a father’s day card he had made for Graham. Graham want to support Edward’s Trust as he credits them with helping him return to work – teaching children the same age as Jamie.

Dedicated Trustee Neil Thorogood
IMG_8534Neil has been a Trustee of Edward’s Trust for over 20 years

Sarah and Friends running in memory of Joshua
Edwards Trust supported my family after I lost my precious son. It was a sudden death (meningitis). I attended support groups where I was allowed to just cry and cry without any judgement or anyone telling me it was going to be ok. I also got much comfort from the annual remembrance services held during the Christmas period. These services allowed me to get many emotions out so I was able to cope with Christmas much better.

Debbie, running in memory of her Dad
debI lost my father in 2008, a week before my GCSE exams. Nothing prepares you for the loss of a parent. It is a scary, daunting and emotional time… a whirlwind of emotion that to any child or teenager can seem like the end of the world. I was put in touch with a similar charity to Edwards Trust called Round Oak Robins. I met other teenagers going through that same emotional journey; I heard their stories and together we created memories of our loved ones…and life long friendships.

Learning to cope with my emotions and understanding my loss was the first step in coming to terms with losing my dad and Round Oak Robins helped me every step of the way. Sadly due to a cut in funding Round Oak Robins closed down a couple of years ago. I and so many others lost that support network that Edwards Trust currently offers to other families and children coping with illness and bereavement (some of whom I have the privilege to know).

I am running for Edwards Trust not only to remember my dad but to thank them for their tireless efforts in supporting children and adults learning to cope with loss. Every penny counts. It really does.

Our Counsellor Katie Hobday
katieI am truly grateful for anything you can donate. Edwards trust has a very special place in my heart. I am a counsellor there and have the privilege of supporting bereaved parents through the darkest of days. Often it is a lifeline in times of desperation and deep tragedy. We rely solely on donations to continue this vital support. There are very few centres in the UK that provide this and i am passionate to do all I can to help the Trust survive this recession and continue the wonderful work we do. Fitting in my runs with the 4 bambinos and work is a tricky challenge but I am managing it and inspired by all my lovely clients and colleagues. Please please give what you can as it is a truly worthwhile cause. Love and thanks, Katiexx

10 Weeks Until the Birmingham Half Marathon!

According to the Bupa Great Run Facebook page, there are now only ten weeks (or 9 weeks and 6 days) to go!! Which is very exciting! The running vests are ordered, and tomorrow I’m ordering decorations for the day! So if you haven’t yet secured your place in the run, please do so soon!! http://www.greatrun.org/Events/event.aspx?id=14

And also, it may be time to set up your Just Giving page at http://www.justgiving.com/edwardstrust.

If you haven’t seen on Facebook and Twitter, WE ARE NOW OFFICIALLY THE BIGGEST EDWARD’S TRUST TEAM EVER! Chantrey Vellacott have entered 10 runners, which takes us up to 77. If we include the 7 children in the Mini Marathon, and a team of a currently unspecified number from Mander Portman Woodward Sixth form, we have definitely beaten 2011’s record of 73! So well done all of you on being record breakers before you’ve even set foot on the course!

So, we should hopefully be in for a great year fundraising!! Including the 77 definite adults:

If all of you raised just £200, that would make £15,400 for Edward’s Trust – enough to provide a full course of wellbeing support for 70 bereaved parents, to ease the physical symptoms of grief.

If everybody raised £300, the total would be £23,100, which could provide 770 counselling sessions.

If everybody raised £400, we would get a whopping £30,800 would fund full counselling for 28 children (based on the average amount of sessions taken) with enough left over for 3 sets of craft materials to help children express themselves non-verbally and create memory items.

There are plenty of ideas to boost the amount you raise here:

That also means you only have 10 weeks to train – but that’s still plenty!

Find 70 great general tips here: http://www.runnersblueprint.com/blog/greatest_running_tips/

The Bupa site also has a section specifically to give you free training advice here: https://www.greatrun.org/Training/Default.aspx

If you would like to be part of Team 25, contact fundraising@edwardstrust.org.uk

Chantrey Vellacott Boost Team 25

Edward’s Trust has received a huge boost to our 25th Anniversary Half Marathon Team from neighbours Chantrey Vellacott, who have put together a team of 12 for the Bupa Great Birmingham Run. ‘Team 25’ now stands at almost 80 people, and still growing – that means we will be celebrating our anniversary with our biggest Half Marathon team ever!

Support has also come from HSBC, Hollywood Monster, Hallfield School, Mander Portman Woodward Sixth Form, and Tyndallwoods Solicitors, who have all entered teams. SJ Mortgage Solutions are sponsoring the team, and Managing Director Stuart Moseley will also be running.

They will all be getting a massive cheer on Calthorpe Road on 19th October, as we will be gathering at Edward’s Trust to support our team as they run past. Everybody is welcome to come down and join us to celebrate our anniversary on what is shaping up to be a very special day!

You can sponsor the team from Chantrey Vellacot here:

We have a very exciting new way for you to support Edward’s Trust!

When using Photobox to create Memory Books and other personalised items, 5% of your spending and up to £6.50 per new customer will be given to Edward’s Trust. All you have to do is follow this link to Photobox:

You can also find this link at the side of this page, and on the Edward’s Trust website fundraising page:

As well as being able to create lovely personalised presents, Photobox items are an ideal way to remember your loved ones. Sarah has written about her experience of using Photobox to make a memory book for her son Dane:

A little while back I was given the idea to do a Memory Book for my son Dane who passed away in 2006, aged 5 ½. I thought I would share my experience of doing this with you as you may feel inspired to do a similar thing yourself as it has bought me a lot of happiness and comfort, my only regret is that I didn’t do it sooner!
Having mulled over the idea of a memory book for a while I set about compiling a list of people who I would ask to contribute. This list grew as I included not only the obvious family and friends, but also school teachers, healthcare professionals and others who had known Dane .
I drafted up a little note explaining what I was hoping to do and then I distributed this to all those on my list either hand delivered, emailed or by text. In the note I asked them to think of a time that they may have spent with Dane or a particular thing that they remembered about him, it didn’t matter if it was just a line or two or a whole page, the choice was theirs.
To be honest replies took a while to gather in and a few people needed a ‘gentle nudge’! Some worried about what to write but I reassured them that there was no ‘right or wrong’ thing to write, just something that they remembered.Dane's memory book
After several months I had a nice collection of replies, about 40 in total and I discovered that different people mentioned different times and activities in his life, some of which I had forgotten about, others told me tales which I had never known before. All in all I was delighted with the response and set about looking through the numerous photo albums I have of Dane to see what photos I might have to accompany the many stories. I was surprised to find that I had pictures for most of them.
Having then typed up all my responses and uploaded photos I was ready to create my memory book. I used a website called ‘photobox’ which was user friendly and helped me create a very professional book at a very reasonable price.
My finished ‘masterpiece’ took some time to create as I fiddled around with text, pictures and embellishments but it was a labour of love and I enjoyed doing something positive in Dane’s memory. When the book arrived I was so excited to show it off, everyone who has read it so far has given so many compliments and although the odd tear has been shed it is a very vibrant, positive book recalling happy times that we have spent together.
I am so pleased that I now have this lasting tribute to Dane, a record of his life and times spent with those who were special to him.

By Sarah Bradshaw