This page gives a brief overview of each of the projects I have set up.
Click the corresponding title to be redirected to further in-depth information on the corresponding webpages.
The list below shows a breakdown of each part of the project – click any of the bullet points to be redirected to the corresponding webpage for each.
- LIFE THROUGH MY EYES: my blog & about me, my health conditions, past medical history & more.
- BRAVERY BOTTLES – the main box of chronic illness to set, aim for, work towards, and achieve via a motivation-driven, self-reward’ system.
- KATIE’S CARE KITS – a self explanatory sub-project that involves buying, making up, and distributing ‘care kits’; the contents of which differing according to the target group of vulnerable people.
- TEDDIES WITH TRACHS – self- adapted teddies with a variety of medical equipment, including (but not limited to) tracheostomies, feeding tubes, central lines & cannulas, catheters, oxygen nasal specs etc., intended to be distributed as a visual tool for children who are undergoing an operation, for explanation/understanding, a method of distraction, a non-isolation technique and normalising their ill-health by having a bear that looks the same as them.
- ACTIVITIES FOR ALL – a wide range of a variety of projects, each separately contributed to by anyone who signs up to participate. At times, there will be multiple project running in conjunction to eachother, and only in this situation may there be projects that specify participants being chronically ill and/or a member of ‘Bravery Bottles’. The vast majority of projects are open to anyone and everyone!
Bravery Bottles is the main part of the project, and the root of the sub-projects.
The intention of Bravery Bottles (first and foremost) is to give the well-deserved recognition of bravery towards those who suffer from and endure – albeit inevitably – any type of chronic illness (be it physical, mental, or both), for the approach taken for overcoming obstacles and face difficulties that are a direct result of chronic illness.
Not only that, but the project also aims to redefine the word ‘bravery’, by highlighting the fact that it can be interpreted differently from one person to the next, and so should be judged subjectively.
> To go to the Bravery Bottles’ webpage, click here <
‘TEDDIES WITH TRACHS’
‘Teddies with Trachs’ was set up in order to incorporate children into the project.
Despite the name, this part of the project involves making adaptions to teddy bears using medical supplies including tubes, lines, pumps/devices, and any other medical equipment.
The ultimate goal, (that I hope can be achieved in the near future), is for enough money to be raised, items donated, or – better still – the project to be officially funded/sponsored, so that bears to be assigned and distributed to specific children and adapted accordingly (have the same medical ‘adaptions’/’additions’).
For some children who receive a bear, they are either acutely unwell or having mild surgery, and so are new to hospitals completely. For others, they were born with medical conditions and have been in and out of hospital for some or all of their life.
Whichever one of the above two situations, enduring any kind of operation, whatever your age or overall state of health may be, is very daunting. The hope is that the bears – each personally adapted to look the ‘same’ as the child receiving it, will relieve some of their worries and nerves.
Unfortunately, the teddies are very pricey – exceeding the project budget by far. To give a general estimate, the cost of a single bear, fully clothed, including adaption, plus the P&P cost, totals – on average – £35 minimum. Therefore, to fund an adapted bear to each and every individual child having an operation/surgical procedure, the project fund needs to be much higher than it is now (< £0!)
As a temporary alternative whilst funding and/or sponsorship is being further explored, self-funded ‘care kits’; ‘Children’s inpatient Care Kits’ (more information in the section to follow) are being made, sent, and distributed to children upon admission to hospital.
Bears are also available to privately purchase with adaptions of your choice in the project shop at a cost of £35 (including P&P/shipping).
> To go to the ‘Teddies with Trachs’ webpage, CLICK HERE.
‘KATIE’S CARE KITS’
This sub-project stemmed from an observation I made myself during one of many of my own hospital admissions, and coming to realise that having my family come to visit every day, to bring in my own possessions: pyjamas, toiletries, electronics etc., is something I take for granted (and still do today) – not everyone is as fortunate.
I’ve occupied a shared hospital bay for months at a time with people who haven’t had anyone to visit them, and therefore having no one to bring any of their own possessions in for them; your own blanket, dressing gown, favourite book or photograph is the best thing possible when you’re inadvertently lonely, isolated, unwell, fed up, and homesick.
Provided below is a list of the current kits. Click on each title to lalongside a brief (-ish!) summary of the purpose, contents list examples, photos, application & nomination forms, and doe those who would like to donate; the links to the various approaches are also provided.
The positive feedback and feeling of reward accompanying it has led go developing the range of kits (and their contents), and although each kit has both differing purposes and contents, they are all targeted towards helping a specific group of vulnerable people in a wide range of situations.
Bulk Hospital Kits:
Another approach to ‘Katie’s Care Kits’ is providing a ward with the same item in relation to the number of beds they have, and with the intention of it remaining on the ward permanently rather than taken home by the patient on discharge; as is the intention of the individual patient kits. Some examples of items that might be bought in bulk for a ward include: bedside fans, drinking cups/jugs, multi-connection chargers, slipper socks, etc.).
Going forward, the plan for the project is to expand it, and provide kits to reach out to those who are classified under the groups of people it’s aimed at. This means veering away from kits that provide the essentials for a short stay away from the luxuries of your own home, towards kits that contain items to suit those with no home at all; the homeless – arguably the most vulnerable group there is.
> To go to the ‘Katie’s Care Kits’ webpage, CLICK HERE.
‘Activities for all’
Another extra part that’s new to the project is ‘activities for all’.
The idea of this – to summarise – includes running activities and/or fundraisers, that anyone and everyone can join in with, irrespective of age, gender, location, state of health and whether you’re a member of ‘Bravery Bottles’ or not.
Once set up, you’ll be able to pick and choose the activities that you want to join in with, and once your participation form is completed and submitted, you’ll be sent the necessary equipment to join in with each individual activity.
The majority of the activities involve creating something small which – on it’s own – may not seem very helpful at all. However, when put together with the parts from other people & see it as part of the the bigger project (i.e. together with everyone else’s contribution of the same activity – whatever that may be), the final creation will have been made/achieved.
The explanation given with each activity when it is launched will give you a clearer view of the final aim/product that it is hoped will be achieved by the end of it. It is completely understandable that not everyone has the means to contribute financially, and the project will do it’s utmost to fund the activities for everyone who wants to take part – irrespective of the financial situation of each applicant.However, until the project is funded partly by a secondary source/completely by a third party, the supplies for each activity will be distributed in batches.
The batches will be distributed as follows:
- The first batch will be sent to those who have the means to pay (in a single lump sum) the cost of the equipment and the postage.
- Second on the list will be those who have partly covered the cost of the equipment & shipping.
- This batch will be sent when the remaining funds for all of the similarly requested parcels have been funded.
- The third (and final) batch are for the people who don’t have the means at all to pay the cost of either the equipment or postage.
- Again, this batch will be sent out all at the same time when enough funds have been raised/outside donations made to cover the cost of all requests of those on the waiting list.
N.B. All donations are completely optional and just a bonus to help all of those who’d like to be included in the activity but can’t necessarily afford to. It is completely optional and by no means a necessity.
> To go to the ‘Activities for All’ webpage, CLICK HERE.