Earlier this year Little Lives UK supported Footsteps Foundation with funding of £1,300 to help fund ‘Spider Therapy’.
The ‘Spider’ is a metal frame which surrounds the child to which therapists attach elastic ropes that act as a harness to support a child who may not be able to support their own weight. Children are aided with learning to walk with this bespoke therapy which helps to stabilise them and assisting them in kneeling, sitting or standing positions, dependent on their goal.
After a recent report from Footsteps Foundation and seeing the amazing work they have done, we are proud to announce that we are supporting Footsteps Foundation with a further £5,500 to fund 100 pairs of specialist MEMO orthopaedic shoes that are recommended to be used by the therapists that work with the children. The shoes we are funding are free of charge for the children who are receiving therapy.
As we are now working closer together with Footsteps Foundation, we have recently participated in an interview with Funding Officer Laura from Footsteps Foundation to find out more about their amazing organisation and the work they do.
Who started Footsteps Foundation?
“Footsteps Foundation was started by Pip Hoyer Millar MBE in 2004. Pip and her daughter Minty, who has Cerebral Palsy, were told by doctors that she would never walk. Pip who would not accept this sought out new ways therapies from around the world and found the ‘Spider’ apparatus being used for therapy sessions in Poland.
The therapy rapidly improved Minty’s mobility so Pip and two of Footstep Foundation’s therapists, Filip and Gosia Swietlik, brought back the apparatus to the UK and set up Footsteps Foundation.”
What does Footsteps Foundation do?
“Footsteps Foundation are enabling children in the UK to reach their full potential and mobility. We at Footsteps Foundation are bridging the gap between the intensive therapy that the NHS doesn’t offer and covering as much of the costs as possible for children to access the treatment they need which can be very expensive. Not only are we providing the treatment but we can fund the places for children can to come to us.”
What is the main reason children seek support from Footsteps Foundation?
“The main reason children are referred to us or their families seek support is because their child has a neurological disorder. Brain to muscle connections are not connected or partially connected meaning that the child has no or limited movement. Our Spider Therapy sessions are helping to work on muscle and brain connections.”
How many children are supported by Footsteps Foundation
“Currently we are supporting between 70 and 100 children a year. The children attend a three-week intensive therapy course with our therapists and stay at our accommodation. But they may return more than once a year for numerous sessions of therapy.”
What will the donation from Little Lives UK mean for Footsteps Foundation and the children who are supported?
“The donations from Little Lives UK have been extremely helpful, your previous donation helped us fund the Spider Therapy for families who usually would have to bear the brunt of the cost. Because of the donation a lot of the costs have been alleviated.”
“Your latest donation is now funding 100 pairs of MEMO orthopaedic shoes that we can now give for free to the children who come to us for therapy. The shoes are made in Poland as well and are recommended specifically by our specialists. We can now also buy a whole year’s worth of shoes at once instead of placing multiple orders throughout the year which speeds up the process and ensures that the children can get their shoes quicker.”
Any thoughts for the future of Footsteps Foundation?
“There are so big changes coming to Footsteps Foundation in the next year or so; the building we are currently using need vacating so we are looking for a new building. Though our current place is lovely, it is an exciting time because we will be able to make the new building more modern and user friendly for the children and families who come to us for therapy.
Little Lives UK are proud to be working with Footsteps Foundation for children around the UK who are most in need of support. We look forward to working with them again in the future and wish them the best of luck with finding a new building to call their next home.