Saturday, 13 July 2024
UK Charity Week 2024 - Sponsored by Sinclair Method UK
Saturday, 13 July 2024

Tom’s Trust marks one year of supporting families in the North West

TOM’S Trust, a UK charity that provides psychological support to the whole family following a child’s brain tumour diagnosis, hosted a celebration event recently, to mark a year of its service at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital – where the charity funds three clinical psychologists.

The clinical psychologists support families across the North West where a child has been diagnosed with a brain or central nervous system tumour. The event brought together the clinical team, the charity and families who have benefitted from the service in the last year. The Tom’s Trust service at Alder Hey was launched in 2023. There are approximately 43 children and young people diagnosed with brain and spinal tumours at Alder Hey each year. Before this Tom’s Trust service opened, the average wait for psychological support for a family facing a child’s brain tumour diagnosis was six months, the new service managed to initially reduce this wait to weeks.

Dr Meghan Owens, Tom’s Trust Clinical Psychologist at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, said:

“The work of Tom’s Trust makes a huge difference. With their support we can be responsive and screen all our new families within two weeks, so they all have a point of contact with our team. We work with families at all different stages; some may be at the point of diagnosis, some will be struggling with the impact of treatment, and some will be facing challenges getting back to school and daily life. We can now also offer sibling support; we couldn’t do that without Tom’s Trust funding.

“A cancer diagnosis doesn’t just affect the child, it is everyone around the child – family, school, extended family, and friends. If you are left to navigate this alone, outcomes for families would be very different. If a parent is struggling, they are not at full capacity to support their child. The families whose children go on to reintegrate well into school and home life are the ones who will have had good support from the whole oncology team. We believe in prevention rather than cure (wellbeing specific).”

Rebecca Wood, Tom’s Trust CEO, said:

“We are delighted to have been able to mark one year of our service at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital with this event. We are so proud to be able to help families living with a devastating brain tumour diagnosis in the North West. Our highly specialised team has had a positive impact on the families who so desperately need this vital support, and our funding has allowed families to be reached much quicker. We are now preparing to open a fourth service and planning for a fifth and sixth across the UK, allowing even more families to access our support.”

To find out more about Tom’s Trust, please visit:


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