Even though the Virgin Money UK London Marathon2020 was cancelled, Emma Mills (our hero) ran the 26.2 miles from Abereiddy to Llanstadwell in aid of Sandy Bear on the 3rd October. Despite pouring rain and really difficult conditions. An amazing achievement and raised funds for us to support the charity.
The Sandy Cubs room is ready and now only awaiting the little children we have the privilege of supporting. As soon as we can safely open with the coronavirus restrictions
Thank you to @TNLCommunityFund, #southhooklng and the Remembering Jacob Memorial Fund for getting us this far
The London Welsh Male Voice Choir (LWMVC) is a big part of members lives with Thursday night rehearsal at the London Welsh Centre with a pint upstairs and then maybe one across the road in the Calthorpe. Going into Covid-19 Lockdown has, like many other choirs, prevented traditional rehearsals and also performances.
It has therefore been important for the Choir to keep meeting and rehearsing. The Choir now rehearses on a Thursday evening on Zoom and has also added classes to enhance Choristers musicology skills.
On Saturday 20th June the Choir was due to perform at St Davids Cathedral to help raise funds for the Sandy Bears Children’s Bereavement Charity. To mark this and to provide a focus for rehearsals the Choir has recorded a virtual performance of Men of Harlech. It has been fantastic to see Choristers of all ages embrace the technology to allow more than 45 Choristers to participate in the recording.
Sandy Bear Children’s Bereavement Charity has received over £10,000 in support from Pembrokeshire County Council in recognition of the vital and unique evidence-based work it carries out, supporting children and young people who have lost a loved one. In addition, the Council will further 50% match-fund a new Assistant Clinical Lead post for 2 years to help the charity manage demand and plan for the future.
The charity, based in Milford Haven, will use the money to expand service provision through the recruitment of a new member of staff and to also provide anticipatory grief services to prepare children and young people who are living with a loved one with a life-limiting condition. Up to a third of children currently referred to Sandy Bear could benefit from this service.
Sandy Bear is as an independent charity and is staffed part-time by 3 individuals who are supported by a dedicated group of volunteers. The charity was founded by Anita Hicks and Karen Codd along with a small group of committed trustees in 2017. Since then, the charity has received 150 referrals and supported over 100 children and their families, with evidence-based bereavement support.
The new funding from Pembrokeshire County Council will aid the charity through increased demand for services and loss of income resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic whilst, at the same time, helping Sandy Bear to broaden their service offering. Sandy Bear remains dedicated to supporting children and young people up to the age of 18, to improve and strengthen their emotional health and well-being, who have experienced the death of a loved one.
Ceri Crichton, Charity Development Lead of Sandy Bear says: “We’re delighted that Pembrokeshire County Council is investing in Sandy Bear and the children, young people and families we help, especially at this challenging time when demand for our service is rising. We look forward to working closely with the Council over the coming years and we remain committed to providing exceptional therapeutic support for children, young people and their families who have suffered the loss of a loved one.”
Gareth Edwards, Group Manager, Prevention and Early Help at Pembrokeshire County Council says:
“We recognize the valuable contribution and support Sandy Bears provide to Young People and Families in Pembrokeshire and the injection of financial support, at a difficult time for many charities will go so way to ensure the well-being of children and young people now and in the future”.
We are delighted to share that Sandy Bear has launched our very own You Tube Channel…a library of all the resources we share online and with the children, young people and families that receive our support following the loss of a loved one.
Anita Hicks and Karen Codd, co-founders and Clinical Leads at Sandy Bear say – “This is an important resource for all children, young people and carers we help. It is in addition to the face-to-face, group and telephone contact to everyone who comes into touch with the Sandy Bear service. We are delighted that we can now offer a suite of resources online too.
Unchecked bereavement can affect lives so we are committed to doing everything we can to support our Sandy Bear family”
“You voted and named Sandy Bear Children’s Bereavement Charity your Charity of the Year for 2019. We went on to achieve an incredible amount of work together, resulting in a Children’s Bereavement hub for the whole of Pembrokeshire. Without your amazing support our Sandy Bear house would not be where it is now – providing support to all Pembrokeshire children.
We wanted to share with you how meaningful your kindness has been to the bereaved children, young people and families in Pembrokeshire that we are privileged to support.
The hours you volunteered saw you empty, repair, clean, paint and decorate a beautiful space dedicated to supporting children and young people. Through your kindness, we now have a lovely and welcoming home, where our children, young people and families can visit us, in an environment created solely with them in mind.
Your generosity has enabled us to work with over 100 children and their families and carers directly at Europa House, helping them through the most difficult and distressing of times. With your support, we are working very hard to support those who come to us to see and reach for happiness in their lives and move forward following the death of a loved one.
We know our service makes a positive difference to bereaved children, young people and families, they’ve told us! They’ve also told us how safe and relaxed they feel in our Sandy Bear house which enables them to talk as easily as they can about what’s happened to them, their fears and their hopes.
Without your support, this would not have been possible – on behalf of the children, young people and their families; our volunteers; our trustees; and Anita, Karen and Ceri, we want to say a huge thank for all that you have done and all you continue to do.
We feel very blessed to have the support from the employee volunteers at Valero.”
Anita Hicks and Karen Codd
Founders of Sandy Bear Children’s Bereavement Charity
9th March 2020 – Press Release
Sandy Bear Children’s Bereavement Charity is celebrating after being awarded almost £10,000 in National Lottery funding to support its work with children who have lost a loved one. The charity, based in Milford Haven, will use the money to extend its services further, by setting up a new specialised group, supporting children 5 years and younger who have suffered the loss of a parent, sibling or grandparent.
Sandy Bear is as an independent charity and is staffed part-time by 3 individuals who are supported by a dedicated group of volunteers. The charity was founded by Anita Hicks and Karen Codd along with a small group of committed trustees in 2017. Since then, the charity has supported over 100 children and their families, with evidence-based bereavement support.
The new funding from The National Lottery Community Fund, which distributes money raised by National Lottery players for good causes and is the largest community funder in the UK, will part-fund a new service called Sandy Cubs that will bring bereaved children and families together by working with them in talking with their very young child about their loved one’s death, including how and what to share, understanding the right words to use and starting conversations around what happens afterwards. It will support them to think about the child’s experience, what helps a child grieve, how a young child grieves and how to maintain close attachment to the one who has died.
At the same time, Sandy Bear will remain dedicated to supporting children and young people up to the age of 19, to improve and strengthen their emotional health and well-being, who have experienced the death of a loved one.
Ceri Crichton, Charity Development Lead of Sandy Bear says: “We’re delighted that The National Lottery Community Fund has recognised our vital work in this way. We will now be able to broaden our existing services in line with the need that is acknowledged for bereavement support for very young children and their families in Pembrokeshire. We owe a big thank you to National Lottery players who have made this possible., helping children and their families through the most difficult of times.”
Isobel Hall, Volunteer and Chair of the trustees says: “The building of our charity relies on the fantastic support of our local community and we are delighted that the National Lottery Community Fund has chosen our project. It makes the difference a huge difference to those we support, allowing us to move forward and to make a valuable difference to children and their families”.