Surreal, it’s the only word I can use to describe the opening of our very own Jolly Josh centre! Today the charity has reached a gigantic milestone, that once was an unrealistic, unachievable dream. For those that have followed and read my previous blogs, ‘HOPE’ features greatly in most. Today firstly demonstrates that we should never give up on hope, nor should we give up on our vision, our passion, our drive. ‘Inclusion’ is defined as ‘the practise or policy of providing e
In 2019 I was invited to Rochdale Woman of the Year as a shortlisted nominee. I worked at the local special school teaching children with Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities and so replied to say that I didn’t think I’d be able to attend. After much persuasion from the organisers, I came to the event with a friend who was also a representative trustee of Jolly Josh. Friends and family were unable to book the time off work and, in all honesty, even though I was incr
We are now four years into our grief journey, and it’s not become any easier, time IS NOT a healer. I no longer cry every day, but Joshua is in my thoughts throughout, casting a feeling of numbness, a sense of emptiness. Upon reflection, I changed the day that Joshua passed away, I didn’t want to but how could I not? I have felt the most mental and physical pain humanly possible, child loss. Its effects are life changing, personality changing and I’m now learning that I c
To James on Father’s Day 2021, (an edited version from 2019) You are appreciated for being the most amazing Daddy to our children. You have supported me in every way since our lives were torn with the grief of learning that our son Joshua had experienced extensive brain damage (aged 6 months old) but especially since our lives were ravaged by his terminal diagnosis just one week after his first birthday. More so, you have been my protector and the person that I’ve come to dep
Today a special little boy should have turned 5, Joshua should have been waking up today another year older, I’d have been thinking about how time passes so quickly and have been wishing for it to pause. Instead, Joshua’s birthday is spent in a state of confusion. How can it be true that instead of having a party, we visit his memorial tree, it’s our reality. Joshua entered this world peacefully, just as he exited. Naturally, I taunt myself with ‘what ifs?’ What if he had hav
On 19th May 2020 Team Jolly Josh put out a plea on our social media for a volunteer bid writer. The charity up until now has been managed and functioned solely by volunteers (with the exception of Emma, our volunteer play worker who gained a paid role from 2018 to February 2020). At Jolly Josh we are a small team of volunteers, proudly making a huge impact on those we support, however we needed an expert in this field... And, along came Lucy! Here's what she has to say... "
To celebrate #VolunteersWeek we'd also like to introduce another #JollyJosh volunteer, we're #sayingthanks to Helen of Brand & Content. Helen has worked extremely hard on a voluntary basis to create and support our website! I am limited in my technical abilities so I contacted Helen who offered her professional support, the time and effort which Helen has put into our website (and in to teaching me) clearly shows, we are thrilled and very proud. It is always a 'work in pro
Meet another fantastic #JollyJosh volunteer... "Having lived in London for years my husband and I decided to move back to the area to have our son. I soon realised that having left my career and friends I now knew no one in the area and although there were lots of baby groups it wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be to make new friends.
I came across Jolly Josh on Facebook Josh’s story and Carole's vision really resonated with me, having felt so lonely with all the support
Meet another#JollyJosh Volunteer “My name is Ann, I have been volunteering for Jolly Josh since the 28th of March 2018.
I am 64 years old, originally from Milnrow, now living in Rochdale.
My working life has been spent in many customer facing roles before retiring in 2015 following the untimely death of my eldest daughter Natalie at the age of 29. Her death left a massive void in my life. Coincidentally it was a friend of my daughter who introduced me to Jolly Josh by forward
On this date 2017 (just 8 days after Josh's 1st birthday) we would be taken to the therapy room @Manchester Children's Hospital for our pre arranged meeting with Joshua's consultants, I knew then that it wasn't going to be positive news. I had thought that perhaps they'd explain that his disabilities would become more complex (if possible). I had no idea just how severe Josh's prognosis was, we were delivered the shocking news that Joshua had 'weeks if months to live.' On th