Meningitis can affect anyone at any given time.
But did you know the following?
- Babies, toddlers and children under 5 are the most at risk age group for meningitis and over 50% of all cases occur in this age group
- Bacterial meningitis kills more children in this age range in the UK than any other infectious disease
Meningitis Now is a registered charity formed in 2013 by bringing together Meningitis UK and Meningitis Trust, founders of the meningitis movement in the UK. Meningitis Now raises money to fund research into meningitis and to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of the disease, as well as supporting families whose lives have been affected by it.
I first heard about the work that Meningitis Now does when I attended a function a few months ago. Caroline McDonnell, Events Fundraiser, described some of the work the charity does, such as funding research into vaccines, home visits to families affected by Meningitis, one-to-one support, counselling and financial assistance to families.
What got me was when Caroline gave an example of financial assistance being paid for the funeral costs of a child that the child’s family never expected to have.
Meningitis Now is dependent on voluntary donations to continue its work.
This is where you come in Bristol mums and dads!
If you are a mum, dad or carer to a child aged under 5, you can take part in a Meningitis Now Toddle Waddle, a short sponsored stomp for under 5s, filled with fun learning activities that fit with EYFS and other educational frameworks.
The theme for this year is ‘Under the Sea’; the aim being to teach children about sea life whilst having fun and helping to raise both awareness of meningitis and funds for our charity.
It is free to organise and take part in and can be held at any time throughout the year and at any location so long as it is safe. It can be held inside or outside, in a park, playground, field…the possibilities are endless.
All that is asked of people taking part is that you raise as much sponsorship and awareness of the disease as possible.
Here are some Toddle Waddle stories to inspire you.
It is easy to register – you can either register online or email Meningitis Now at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0845 120 4530.
Once you have signed up, you will receive a fundraising pack with everything that you will need for your Toddle Waddle. There are lots of free “Under the sea” activity sheets for you to download and enjoy as part of your Toddle Waddle.
I have signed up to organise my own Meningitis Now Under the Sea Toddle Waddle and have received my pack through the post.
Bristol Mums, dads and carers – Will you join me and sign up for your own Toddle Waddle too?