The RVH Liver Support Group funded and hosted a party for families of children with liver conditions at the Olympia Leisure Centre in Belfast on Saturday 27th April.
48 children and 38 adults were there, as well as Tracey (lead specialist gastro-nurse), Stacey, (specialist gastro-nurse), Paul (gastrostomy nurse) and Janine (dietitian). The Support Group was represented by Rachel, Lucia, Donald and Jennifer, who had organised the day following a request from the nursing team in January for an event to celebrate the courage and resilience of families.
The day started calmly enough with registration, tea, coffee, juice, scones and very large cookies! However, the bouncy castle was soon a hive of vigorous activity involving a number of children and one particularly energetic nurse. Louis the magician then arrived and kept his audience well entertained until lunchtime. After lunch Louis drew caricatures for a long queue of adults and children, as the bouncy castle continued to heave, some of the children played football, others coloured in and built Lego. Meanwhile the big people shared stories and reflections all round the room. As Paul said at the end: ‘It’s brilliant to see families and kids just being normal.’
Our thanks to all the Olympia staff for a great venue, an excellent lunch and for making us so welcome.
We are already looking forward to meeting families again at the Share Centre, Lisnaskea, on 14th/15th September. Details of this weekend will be sent out in early June. Spaces limited – so book early!