While hopes continue to grow that we’ll soon be embracing some normality again, here at the Charity we have continued our work throughout the recent lockdown – and you, our amazing supporters and beneficiaries, are at the heart of that.
Now we’re delighted to announce the Spring 2021 issue of Shout! is out – and it’s packed full of your incredible stories over the last few months, alongside all the latest news, events and updates.
This third lockdown has, for many of us, been the hardest yet – but as spring arrives so does that much-needed light at the end of the tunnel as restrictions begin to ease. The Charity has never closed, however, and our teams have continued to deliver support virtually throughout.
Our cover stars for this issue are 11-year-old Theo and his amazing assistance dog, Malone. Theo, who is the son of Cheshire firefighter Anthony Naylor, has found daily life a struggle for years due to living with autism. After enquiring about getting an assistance and therapy dog for his son, Anthony was concerned how the family would afford it, but our Welfare Services team helped to make that dream a reality. He reflects on the difference Malone has made to his son’s life since.
Elsewhere, Camberley firefighter Ray Antrobus reveals how he found the support he desperately needed from the Charity via video consultation, after sustaining a physical injury during lockdown. You can hear more about his incredible journey in the video below.
Remaining open throughout the pandemic has meant we’ve had to adapt and innovate to deliver our services in new, virtual ways. But far from limiting the ways we can help our beneficiaries, this has added strength and depth to our support arsenal. We share how we’ve expanded our mental health, physical health and social wellbeing provision through a number of different platforms, including the introduction of a leading, safe and secure online consultation platform and an online and telephone counselling service.
There’s nothing firefighters love more than a humble brew. So, what better way to recognise the efforts the fire services community has gone to during the pandemic than with a cup of tea? We’ve joined forces with Typhoo Tea to launch our exciting new fundraising campaign, Brew With a Crew, from Tuesday 4 May, in line with International Firefighters Day. We’re inviting everyone to form their own virtual crew – whether that’s with family, children, colleagues or friends – and have a brew over a video call, while making a donation to our Charity. You can find out more and register to take part at www.firefighterscharity.org.uk/brew.
As always, our magazine is full of practical tips and advice for improving your health and wellbeing and we look back at the first in our series of awareness campaigns, focusing on healthy lifestyles. We know the last few months have tested us all more than ever, and many of you may have been struggling to feel motivated, so we’ve created an online hub full of inspirational content to help you make healthier choices with the way you live. Our Nursing Services Lead, Kath Savage, explains how making these choices could pay dividends in the future while also launching our next awareness programme, focusing on healthy joints.
Meanwhile, Psychological Therapist Kerri Wright explores the huge benefits of getting outdoors and Jubilee House’s Exercise Therapist James Wilson explains why regular activity is the best thing you can do for yourself while living with arthritis.
The second series of our Shout!Podcast is well and truly underway now too, with each 20-minute episode focusing on a different health and wellbeing topic. From top tips on sleeping well, to advice on dealing with trauma and injury prevention, it aims to help you live healthier and happier. Hosted by Kim Robson, Shout!Podcast also offers you the chance to share your stories and ask those questions that you’ve always wanted to know the answer to. You can find out more and take part in the show at www.firefighterscharity.org.uk/shoutpodcast.
And Paul Fuller, Chief Fire Officer for Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service, sits down with us and explains why becoming Chair of our Board of Trustees means so much to him.
For all of this and much more, pick up a copy of Shout! or hit the link below. And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for even more news from across the Charity throughout the year.