Tag Archives: mumsnet

Mumsnet Essex visits The Shard for Halloween

Myself and two of my children were invited by Cadbury UK to visit The Shard in London for the Halloween event.

Our visit was Thursday 30th October.

My daughters spotted the building before me and I was meant to be looking for it. I should have just looked up towards the sky.

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Entering the building, you are met by friendly, helpful staff who direct you where to go.

Lift 1 takes you to floor 33 in a very short time. Lift 2 takes you to floor 68 equally as fast as the first lift. (6 metres a second). The rides are smooth and you feel very safe. However be prepared for some disorientation and possible ear blocking as you leave the second lift.

Floor 68 has a viewing platform and you can really see for miles. Iconic sights such as the London Eye are easy to spot. We also managed to view the amazing poppies at The Tower of London.

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We then took the stairs to level 72. Our first view on this level was of the huge Cadbury’s Halloween Spider Web which took up almost one side of the Shard. The children on the level seemed to be quite interested in the web.

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This level is slightly open roofed and was a little breezy when we visited. Whilst I would have liked to have looked around the platform my daughters were actually quite scared because of this so we had to go back down to level 68.

After a while we went back down in the two lifts (again not so good for the ears). The exit is through the Gift Shop which is to be expected. Again the staff were very helpful.

I would recommend a visit to The Shard. The numbers are limited so you are not rushed and can view for as long as you wish. I found the children visiting at the same time as us were interested although I am not sure how long the attention span of a younger child would last for.

The Shard, 32 London Bridge Street, London SE1 9SG.

http://www.theviewfromtheshard.com

The Pride of Essex Awards 2014

Pride of Essex Awards

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The Pride of Essex Awards recognises and rewards the achievements and the courage of adults and children who overcome adversity and who make a difference to the lives of others and to the community.

If you know a child or adult who has overcome adversity or just given their best for the community, or a group which has made an outstanding achievement, you can nominate them for an award by going to the Pride of Essex Awards website www.prideofessexawards.org.

There are four categories. Each category will have four highly commended as well as an award winner. All will receive acknowledgements and rewards.

The Directa Ultimate Award and the Susie Cornell Award recognise and reward adults and children who have overcome adversity. The Blue Strawberry Unsung Hero Award recognises and rewards exceptional care in the community.  The SL Caravans Community Champion Award recognises outstanding community achievement and fundraising.

The awards are now open to receive nominations which can be made either online or by post to  ‘P.O.E ‘ , c/o Directa UK Ltd, Cold Norton, Essex CM3 6UA.

For further information contact awards chairman Dave Dennison on  01621 828882 or email davidd@directa.co.uk

When Mumsnet Essex met with Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg & Justine Roberts (Mumsnet CEO)

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On Monday 30th June 2014, I was invited to head into London to discuss the new Flexible Working Rights with Mumsnet & Nick Clegg.

Up until now, the right to request flexible working hours has only been available for carers, or people who look after children.

This has now been extended to all employees.

Tuesday’s extension of the right to request the chance to work flexibly means more than 20 million employees can now benefit.

Flexible working helps people balance their work with responsibilities, keeping more people in long term employment and enabling companies to keep hold of top talent.

It is expected the new right will be of particular interest to older workers who want to work differently as they approach retirement and to young people entering the labour market who may want take up additional training or learning while they work.

As part of the right, employees can expect their request to be considered in a reasonable manner by employers – this will be much simpler than the previous burdensome process businesses had to undergo before making a decision.

Justine Roberts, Mumsnet CEO opened the discussion by highlighting that Mums generally are seen as a burden by employers due to a number of issues (pregnancy appointments through to childcare), Mumsnet however has 40% of it’s staff on Flexitime.

Nick Clegg then began to speak about how the issues Mums face in the workplace are not just issues for Mothers but for Fathers too, Dads need the same rights as Mums. It is now time to remove the typecast from these roles.

Flexible working will allow all the people with talents to show, not just restrict to a few.

Questions were asked and the consensus was that there needs to be a cultural shift in attitudes regarding flexible working and Mr. Clegg explained that there would be nowhere to hide for those who do not wish to move with the times. Equal childcare will be available to those who choose that option.

We were also advised that babies due from April 2015 will benefit by receiving shared parental leave, again a huge step forward into making parenting & childcare equal and not ‘just a mums’ issue.

You can read more regarding flexible working hours https://www.gov.uk/government/news/flexible-working-rights-extended-to-more-than-20-million Continue reading

Essex Air Ambulance, Go Yellow !

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Charity Fundraisers Inject some Colour into Go Yellow Week!

The Essex Air Ambulance fundraising team get colourful during a yellow powder paint fight to launch Go Yellow 2014! Starting off in pure white, fundraisers Sabi and Jenny were soon coated head to toe in yellow. The battle took place at North Weald Airfield, the home of our sister aircraft the Herts Air Ambulance, as the Crew cheered them on from a safe distance.

The fun stunt is to raise awareness for National Air Ambulance Week in September and encourage registrations for the Charity’s Go Yellow campaign. The week takes place from Monday 22nd to Sunday 28th September and will raise both awareness and funds for the County’s ‘YELLOW’ life-saving helicopter.

The Charity is inviting schools, businesses, groups and individuals to take part by doing anything to Go Yellow during the week. You don’t have to get as messy as our fundraisers: wear a yellow item of clothing or have a non-uniform day, sell yellow cakes or put on a yellow themed quiz or party to raise funds for Essex Air Ambulance. Anything yellow goes! Could you challenge your work colleagues or teachers to a lemon eating competition?!

imageSabi Blyth, Essex Air Ambulance Senior Fundraising Coordinator said: “It was so much fun doing our Go Yellow paint fight, even though it took me three baths to get all the paint out of my hair!! We really want people to have fun with this, so every yellow-themed idea is welcome. If you have any crazy ideas of what you would like to do, get in touch and we can advise you on how we might be able to help. Registering today will help us to keep our life-saving helicopter flying, by raising vital funds and awareness.”
The Essex Air Ambulance receives no direct Government or National Lottery funding, and relies on the generosity of the people who live and work in Essex to continue to save lives.

To register to take part in Go Yellow or find out more about how you can help, contact Jenny Macpherson at Essex Air Ambulance on 0345 2417 690 or email Jenny.Macpherson@EHAAT.uk.com.

Essex Air Ambulance Afternoon Tea

Tea, Coffee and Cake – Time to Bake and Donate to YOUR life-saving Charity!
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This weekend (Friday 27th – Sunday 29th June), Essex Air Ambulance is calling on people across the county to hold a fundraising tea party in aid of the much loved Charity.

Afternoon Tea is a brand new fundraising initiative inviting hosts to sign up to take part and get their friends and family together for some tea and cake. You can make it as simple or as lavish as you like; hold it at home, work, school or even at your local club. Simply ask each of your guests to make a donation to Essex Air Ambulance.

Beverly Heard from Harwich is a volunteer for the Charity and is preparing for her afternoon tea. She said: “I got involved because the thought of afternoon tea with friends and people you know sounds lovely, sometimes we are to too busy and this is a perfect opportunity to meet up and also raise funds for Essex Air Ambulance.”

Margaret Eade of Southend has invited her friends and family for cream tea. Speaking of what inspired her to take part, Margaret said: “If it wasn’t for the Air Ambulance my son Matthew would probably not have survived his near fatal car accident last September. The little that I raise is far short to what we owe but every little helps as they say!”

Hosts can hold anything from a tea break with doughnuts to a Ritz style High Tea with cucumber sandwiches! You can buy cakes or bake your own its up to you! For some refreshing ideas visit EssexAirAmbulance.uk.com.

If you do not have the time to spare to host your own afternoon tea but would like to show your support then why not visit the Carousel Tea Room & Gift Shop in Westcliff-on-Sea or the Shoulder of Mutton in Fordham who are providing Afternoon Teas for their customers over the weekend with donations to Essex Air Ambulance.

Don’t miss out on the Tea Party of the year! Register now for £5 (includes Afternoon Tea Host Pack and free gift!) by emailing Events@EHAAT.uk.com or calling 0345 2417 690.

Have you considered adoption and do you live in Essex?

The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham Adoption Service are calling for potential adoptive parents from across Essex to come forward.

 

Can you make a difference?

 

Adopted children may have had a difficult start to life. Sometimes, adopted children’s early needs may have gone unmet and all will have experienced some form of trauma. Many have suffered abuse or neglect, all have been separated from their birth families and all have spent time in the care system. Many will have grown up feeling unsafe, uncared for and alone.

 

We need parents who are able to offer a child the love, care, time and understanding within a framework of boundaries and consistency to meet these children’s needs into adulthood and beyond.

 

Well cared for children will grow up feeling comfortable safe and loved.

 

There are many myths surrounding adoption, however, you can still adopt a child and give them the upbringing they deserve if you are single, homosexual, already have a family of your own, have a disability, have a modest income or consider yourselves ‘older parents’. All you need is space, time and love for a new child and the determination to stick through the process of building a strong relationship.

 

Barking and Dagenham

 

Barking and Dagenham Council is currently looking to find families for 30 children waiting for a home. They are holding a number of informal open information sessions where you can meet members of the adoption team and an adoptive parent and have all of your questions answered.

 

The 30 children include siblings such as siblings, Sophia and Eddie who are full siblings and are happy children. They are very close and enjoy playing together. Sophia is seven years old and Eddie is just five years old. Sophia and Eddie also have many friends at school and are very sociable children. Their general health is good and there are no concerns regarding their development.

 

*Names have been changed to protect the children’s identities.

 

 

A Happy Ending

 

Joanne,* single adopter shared “I adopted my daughter when she was 4. The adoption team at Barking and Dagenham were very welcoming. I was open minded and wanted to find out if I was right for adoption and adoption was right for me.

 

“As a single adopter I found that there were more couples than singles at the adoption workshops but I expected this and never felt discriminated against.  I have to sing the team’s praises as my little girl was a great match. For me adoption has been a very good experience.”

 

*The adopter’s name has been changed for privacy

 

The upcoming event will be held on:

 

Saturday 5 July 2014, 2pm to 4pm, Broadway Theatre, Barking, IG11 7LS

 

For information about adoption or to reserve your place at this event please call 020 8227 5555. To apply or find out about future information events please visit www.lbbd.gov.uk/adoption

Mumsnet Campaign for Better Miscarriage Care

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Half of women who miscarry wait 24 hours or more for a scan,

and are treated alongside women with healthy pregnancies

 

Mumsnet calls for manifesto commitment on better miscarriage care…

 

 

 

Mumsnet, the UK’s biggest website for parents, is today publishing the results of a survey into patients’ care and experiences following miscarriage. Around a quarter of a million women miscarry in the UK each year1 – about one in five pregnancies ends in miscarriage – but the statistics published today show that the treatment and support women receive fails to meet their needs or measure up to official national guidelines.

A survey of over one thousand women2 shows:

  • Half (46%) had to wait over 24 hours for a scan to determine if their baby was still alive, with one in five (18%) waiting longer than three days

“When I asked how much longer it would be, I was told I was taking up their time.” A Mumsnet user

 

  • Half (47%) were treated alongside women with ongoing pregnancies

“I sat with other ladies who were still pregnant and waiting for scans… seeing their happy faces tore me apart.” A Mumsnet user

 

  • A third (31%) of those who miscarried at home following a scan were not offered any pain relief, or adequate pain relief

“I was under the impression that miscarrying at home was the easy option. It certainly is not easy. I have been in agony.” A Mumsnet user

 

  • 58% of respondents wanted counselling, but only 12% were offered it

“I had to wait six months to get counselling and lost six months of my life as I was not   coping with the loss.” A Mumsnet user

 

56% of respondents wanted further medical care but only 26% were offered it

“The hospital said they’d ask a health visitor to contact me. That was two months ago;    nobody has been in touch.” A Mumsnet user

  • Only a quarter (23%) spoke of their experience to friends, and only 13% told wider family

When I felt ready to talk, I didn’t have anyone ready to listen.”  A Mumsnet user

 

In 2012, NICE guidance on the management of miscarriage stated that miscarrying at home (known as ‘expectant management’) would be the default clinical response for women undergoing miscarriage before the 13th week of pregnancy, but today’s results show this policy is leaving women without the support they need.

  • Only 15% of women who miscarried at home following a scan felt they had the right support, information and pain relief to manage

“I was told, over the phone, to ‘just sit on the toilet and hopefully it will all come out’.”

 

  • 11 people were asked to store their foetus at home prior to further tests on the embryo

“[I don’t want to] catch my miscarried embryo in a urine sample pot at home, keep it in the fridge overnight if necessary, then take it on the train (two hours) for genetic testing.”

 

Mumsnet users have developed a five-point Miscarriage Code of Care, which calls for straightforward improvements in the treatment parents receive:

1.  Supportive staff

2.  Access to scanning

3.  Safe and appropriate places for treatment

4.  Good information and effective treatment

5.  Joined-up care

Many of the Code’s points are included in best-practice guidance from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Department of Health, but the research shows that, too often, this guidance is not being implemented.

Mumsnet is now asking the Secretary of State for Health, the shadow Health Minister and the junior Health Minister to commit to improving miscarriage care during the lifetime of the next parliament.

Justine Roberts, Mumsnet Founder, said:

“There’s no escaping the pain of a miscarriage, but for this to be compounded by lack of treatment, pain relief, good care or just plain human kindness is completely unacceptable. We are calling on the three main parties to include a pledge in their manifestos to improve miscarriage care, based on the principles in our code.”

 

Cathy Warwick, Chief Executive of the Royal College of Midwives, said:

“The Royal College of Midwives welcomes and supports the Mumsnet code of care which aims to improve care for women at a very difficult time. Midwives and other health professionals have an important role to play in supporting women and families through the physical and psychological impact of miscarriage. Kind, compassionate and empathetic communication around care and treatment is an essential step to support families. It is particularly important that there is effective communication between the hospital, GP and midwife to provide ongoing support or advice, as needed.”

 

Jane Brewin, Chief Executive of Tommy’s, said:

“Losing a baby is a devastating experience and our helpline hears from people every day who are struggling to make sense of what has happened to them and why. More research is needed to help us understand the causes of miscarriage so we can develop treatments that help save babies’ lives. We want families to know that they are not alone and that Tommy’s helpline is here to support anyone who has been through this heartbreak.”

 

Susan Seenan, Chief Executive of the national charity Infertility Network UK, said:

“Miscarriage is an extremely distressing, and often frightening experience and sadly even health professionals can underestimate the impact which a miscarriage can have.  Good support and access to counselling from sensitive trained staff who understand the emotional as well as the physical effect of miscarriage on both women and their partners can make an enormous difference to those dealing with the grief of losing a baby.  We hope that this campaign will lead to better care and support for everyone affected by what can be a hugely traumatic experience.”