World Cerebral Palsy Day – October 5th
Cerebral Palsy is a neurological condition that affects the part of the brain that controls muscle movement and co-ordination. The condition affects 1 in 400 children, and can result in mild to severe disability.
World Cerebral Palsy Day – October 5th is a day to recognise the struggle that those with condition are faced with, as well as their families and those who care for them. It is an opportunity to raise awareness, not only for the condition but also for the lack of and desperate need for hygiene facilities that will enable everyone affected by cerebral palsy to live a life unencumbered by their disability.
Such a deficiency came to the attention of Sam Buck when using standard disabled WC facilities to change her son Alfie who has Cerebral Palsy. The undignified and totally unhygienic experience, which is the case for many caring for severely disabled loved ones and force many to remain at home where this cannot happen, was the catalyst for Sam becoming a Campaigner for Changing Places.
Having access to appropriate toileting facilities is a Civil Right, and for those with Cerebral Palsy and any others with multiple and profound learning difficulties, it is being violated.
Sam Buck understood that nationwide Changing Places could be a solution to this, and has been very active in campaigning, including petitioning her local Council in Horsham from which she has recently achieved success. She has also created a change.org petition to encourage local councils to get on board, which currently has over 35,000 signatures.
The fierce campaigning underway, from determined people like Sam on behalf of those with Cerebral Palsy, has led to Changing Places being installed in vital places like Motorway Service Stations and venues such as football stadia. Those with Cerebral Palsy, like Alfie, being able to enjoy full days out without the stress or danger of being changed on a dirty floor is evidence that Changing Places are truly changing lives.
“People do not like change, they do not like talking about toileting, and people are reluctant to create change. Change is slow, but we are getting closer to making Changing Places’ toilets ‘the norm’,” Samantha said.
To find out more about World Cerebral Palsy day and to read their article on Samantha and her family, please click here.
To find out more about Changing Places, please click here.