The Joshua Tree Extends Its Impact

Children’s cancer charity, The Joshua Tree made its move into North Wales officially in October thanks to secured funding from The Steve Morgan Foundation.

The grant will significantly enhance the support The Joshua Tree offers to families affected by childhood cancers across North Wales.

The Joshua Tree has been a provider of physical, psychological and emotional (educational/emotional and practical) support to families affected by childhood cancers for more than 13 years from their support centre in Cheshire. 

Founded in 2006 by Lynda and David Hill after their son was diagnosed with leukaemia, the family discovered a distinct lack in support services for all family members during the traumatic experience of childhood cancer.  

The £90,000 grant funding will secure a full-time Family Support Worker for three years and will be based out of the new North Wales Family Support Hwb in Colwyn Bay, to support families affected by childhood cancers.

Sian Longley, Family Support Lead Wales commented “I began working for The Joshua Tree in September 2018 on a pilot project, supporting families affected by childhood cancers desperately in need of help from across North Wales.  Thanks to the Steve Morgan Foundation it is no longer a pilot program and we are fully operational and able to support the increasing number of family referrals from within North Wales, with 1-2-1 therapeutic sessions, peer support group activities and family activities both during and post treatment.”

The focus remains at theheart of the charity, to offer support to the whole family, from diagnosis, through treatment and beyond, as specifically recognising that post-treatment can be a challenging time, when families are having to adapt to their `new normal`. The charity offers support to help bridge the gap that’s left when the safety net of treatment ends. 

Lynda Hill, Mum of Joshua and Founder said: “The family need in North Wales has been recognised over a number of years now. Funding provided by Steve Morgan Foundation is an incredible gift that will allow us to offer much needed support to families across North Wales, helping us to continue to reach out to those who have experienced the unimaginable pain that a childhood cancer diagnosis brings. We are all extremely thankful to Steve Morgan Foundation for their generosity.”

Jane Harris, Director of Regional Funding with the Steve Morgan Foundation, attended the formal opening of the North Wales Family Support Hwb, to officially present the cheque from the Steve Morgan Foundation.

“We are delighted that funding from the Steve Morgan Foundation has helped what was initially a pilot project develop into now giving The Joshua Tree a more sustained presence in North Wales,” said Jane.

“The Joshua Tree is an extremely well-run and professional charity, offering a much-needed service to children and families affected by childhood cancer.

“The charity offers a wide range of support, not just on an emotional level to children and their families, but also practically in terms of providing important advice and guidance, and support services to schools where pupils and their siblings have been affected by cancer.

“Funding the role of the Family Support Worker will allow The Joshua Tree to support more children and families across North Wales, who would otherwise have nowhere to turn at what is such a difficult and traumatic time in their lives.”

The Joshua Tree not only celebrates the move into North Wales but after 13 years of fundraising construction has begun on a purpose-built support centre in Sandiway, Cheshire which will welcome families from across the North West and North Wales.

Due to be completed early 2020, the centre will provide an appropriate and much needed environment for families, accommodating children of all ages from toddlers through to teenagers and young adults and will feature a multi-functional activity room, counselling suites, soft play and sensory equipment, a games room, office facilities, an outdoor play area and landscaped gardens all ofwhich will further enhance the support service.

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