Facial Palsy UK’s Family Days are a relaxing and fun day for children affected by facial palsy, their siblings and parental guardians. The aim of these days is to reduce isolation for children affected by facial palsy and their parents.
London Creative Family Day – 18th Feb 2017
Our next Family Day is in London on Saturday 18th February 2017 at Eastside Educational Trust, Shoreditch.
The creative day will be centred around developing the participants skills in felt-making, storytelling and shadow puppetry, which will involve them creating sets, characters and an informal sharing of their stories. The day will be full of fun activities which will encourage the participants to work together (with their siblings) and also for the parents to connect in their own break out spaces. The age range of the group will determine the theme/stories that we will be exploring throughout the day. We have use of an adjoining boardroom next to the workshop where parents can chat and share experiences but also be able to see their children’s activities through the window. Lunch, tea, coffee, squash, biscuits and fruit will be provided.
You can arrive between 9 and 10am with the workshop starting at 10am. Activities will finish at approximately 4pm and we must vacate the premises by 5pm. The venue is situated in a pleasant area of London and is a short walk from Bank, Liverpool Street, Old Street, Hoxton and Shoreditch High Street stations. You can also get straight to Old Street station from Welwyn Garden City on an overground train. There is a lift and disabled toilets at the family day venue.
9 – 10 am – Arrivals
10 – 11.30 am – Felt making (will become backdrop)
11.30 – 11.45 am – Break
11.45 am – 12.30 pm – Story building
12.30 – 1.30 pm – Lunch
1.30 – 3.30 pm – Character Puppet/Set making and ‘rehearsal’
3.30 – 4 pm – Informal sharing of scenes/stories
4 – 5 pm – Families vacate
Previous Family Days
How do Family Days help?
Some children with facial palsy may feel isolated because it’s unlikely they will have met another child affected by the condition. They may be the only child in their school with a different smile and this can at times feel quite lonely. Meeting another child who also has the condition can really improve self-esteem.
When you are the person with facial palsy, the only image you have of yourself is your mirror image or what you see in photographs or video. You don’t see what other people see, your animated face with your whole personality shining through. People will often say to someone with facial palsy that they don’t really notice it but it’s only when you meet another person with facial palsy that you begin to understand why this is actually true. Meeting others with the condition really helps to build confidence.
On meeting other children with facial palsy for the first time, a 9 year old girl said:
Thank you, this was the best day of my life.
Our family days are also an opportunity for parents to meet other parents and benefit from mutual support. They may wish to discuss different surgeries, school issues or simply make new friends who share experiences. We also include siblings because often when a child has a medical condition all the family are affected because there will be hospital visits and other pressures.
FPUK Associated Articles:
Externally Linked Articles:
Private Facebook support group for parents and carers of children with facial palsy, operated by Facial Palsy UK.
Last reviewed: 11-11-2016 || Next review due: 01-02-2017