Issue two | Winter 2020
The BIG Give
Our Chief Executive,
explains how the
Charity is responding
to the pandemic
Please support us
Registered Charity No.
1075837 and Company
limited by Guarantee No.
3769775 (England)Foreword from
The past few months have been an
incredibly busy and challenging time at
Chailey Heritage Foundation. In this autumn
edition of Discover, we bring you up to
date with all our recent news, as well as all
the exciting plans we have in the run up to
Christmas to support the Foundation and
the vital services we provide.
We would like
your feedback on
the newsletter www.chf.org.uk/
The young people and the families are at the
heart of everything we do and it was with a
happy heart that we were able to have all
our pupils back at school this September,
after so many months of rotas and families
who were shielding. The return to school
has brought back much needed support and
structure for the children and their families.
In our `Starting School' article, we explore
Bertie's journey since starting school two
years ago and how we help and support
families when their children begin school
During the Covid crisis, we have been
challenged as an organisation to practise
what we preach with regard to pursuing our
potential. We talk publicly with passion about
how we always see opportunities, rather
than challenges, and at no other time have
we had the need to rise to this philosophy,
thinking of new and novel ways to deliver the
services and care we provide to those who
need it most.
2In the article on Celebration Week, we
explore this in more detail, showing how
staff creatively responded to the challenge
of planning and carrying out the biggest
celebration in the Chailey Heritage calendar,
while many young people were at home.
I'd like to thank most sincerely all our staff
working in school and in our residences,
who were designated as key workers during
lockdown. Our staff working in central
services, for example finance and HR, also
showed great resilience as they were forced
to work from home and kept everything
going. We are so fortunate to have such a
Like so many charities, we have had to
cancel all our fundraising events this year,
which has really affected our income.
Fundraising is vital to be able to provide
invaluable services such as Therapeutic
Horse Riding and specialist equipment like
the trampoline for Rebound Therapy, which
you can read about on page 10.
We hope you will be inspired to support
us through one of the many fundraising
initiatives we are undertaking, whether The
Big Give from 1st to 8th December where
any donation you make will be matched,
allowing us to refurbish our outdoor
learning environment for our primary
department, through to joining up to our
community lottery, giving you the chance
to win anything from 25 to 25,000 while
supporting our charity.
Woolly Hat Wednesday
Whether it's a big bobble
hat, a snug beanie, a
thermal ski hat, a stylish
beret, or a fun Christmas
novelty style, we'd love you
to grab your hat for our
first Woolly Hat Wednesday
on 9 December 2020. At
work, at school, on a video
call, in the car, or at home,
donate 2 and show your
support for Chailey Heritage
Foundation whilst keeping
cosy all day, and no doubt
prompting a lot of questions.
Look out for our social media
posts or visit www.chf.
org.uk/WHW for details of
our Woolly Hat Wednesday
competition. We can't wait to
see your photos and would
love you to tell others about
this special day - so please
don't keep it under your hat!
Finally, thank you to every reader and
supporter in what has proved to be a difficult
yet uplifting year for us all. We hope you
enjoy reading this edition of Discover and
we look forward to sharing more stories with
you in 2021.
Winter 2020Starting School
This September we were overjoyed to
welcome all pupils back to school after
such a long period of lockdown, including
new students coming to school for the first
time. When new pupils start school here,
we understand that it can be an exciting but
also anxious time, so we work closely with
their families to understand each pupil and
their very individual personalities and needs.
In this article, one of our teachers, Julie
Tilbury, reflects on getting to know Bertie
since starting school in November 2018.
Bertie taking part in our
annual Celebration Day
Parade with his classmates.
Bertie making music whilst
enjoying the St Martin's
outdoor space with his
Discover | 4
At first glance, you wouldn't think six year
old Bertie can do very much because of
his severe cerebral palsy, which means he
can't walk or talk and needs lots of medical
interventions throughout the day. But, boy
would you be wrong! Bertie has made such
incredible progress since starting school here
nearly two years ago and his team have
learnt so much about him in this time.
One of his big loves is animals, from those
at Patchwork Farm and the ponies who take
the children riding, to his guinea pig, Simon,
who he named after the headteacher!
Bertie has an affinity with animals and an
incredible empathy for people. So much so
that if you are feeling stressed, a cuddle on
the sofa with Bertie will make you feel so
much better. It's known as the `Bertie effect'.
As Lucy, one of his teaching assistants,
describes it, "Bertie is like a medicine,
he always makes you feel better." It's an
Bertie playing Quidditch as part of his Harry
Potter experience in the Dream Centre's
Patchwork Farm and the Dream Centre make
such a difference to Bertie and his friends but
those facilities would not be here without the
help of our extremely generous supporters.
He also loves nothing better than a bit of
role play where he pretends to be a famous
character from a book. During summer
holiday club, he played Harry Potter in the
immersive space in the Dream Centre and
had a game of quidditch.
Since Bertie loves monkeys, his team are
known as Bananas and the class teacher is
the Chief Banana. All Bertie's Bananas spent
a great deal of time settling him (and his
Dad) into school when he started in 2018. It
was important that both Bertie and his family
felt they could trust the team that worked
with him. They learned about his subtle
communication, his medical needs as well as
his interests and the things which make the
day fun for him.
Max, aged 20, left school
last year and has recently
discovered the gym at the
Life Skills Centre. He is doing
so well that he has increased
the amount and variety of
exercises he does. He is
now undertaking a challenge
to complete a marathon
distance of 26 miles on the
exercise bike before the
end of 2020. Currently, Max
spends about 15 minutes on
the bike, so he's certainly on
track to meet his target!
Another exercise Max enjoys
is to walk a circuit outside
the gym which includes
walking over a step block. His
team have noticed how much
he enjoys this, so they have
increased the height of the
step block and the number of
circuits he does in a session.
Recently he completed a set
of six circuits and six steps!
It's wonderful to see Max
enjoying the gym so much
and we wish him all the best
with achieving his marathon
target by the end of this year.
5 Winter 2020The other thing Bertie loves to do is drive his
wheelchair on the powered platform using his
head switch. Bertie doesn't have a powered
chair, so the powered platform allows him to
drive independently using our electronic
track system, which works a bit Scalextrics.
Recently he let us know that he wanted to be
able to choose which direction to go in when
he came to a junction on the track. So, next
term, our design engineer will be working
hard to make that happen.
Bertie's Mum, Lucy, sums it up best when
she describes the family's feelings about
Bertie coming to school here, "We couldn't be
happier with the care and education Bertie
receives at Chailey. Bertie has a wonderful
relationship with all of his Bananas and they
go above and beyond to ensure he gets the
best from everything Chailey has to offer."
"Many of the opportunities that young people like
Bertie enjoy at Chailey Heritage are only possible
because of your generous support. By entering
the Chailey Heritage Lottery, you are not only
helping a great cause, but you will also be in with
a chance of winning up to 25,000 every week."
Lucy, Bertie's Mum
Christmas wrapped up in November
The perennial problem of finding unusual gifts might just be solved this year.
Our online Christmas auction starting on 16 November 2020 will feature an
array of unusual and exciting lots which could be perfect gifts, and best of all
the proceeds from each one will support Chailey Heritage Foundation.
From the recent Sky Atlantic hit TV show "I Hate Suzie", a Quo Vardis hoodie
featured in the series and a page from the script signed by some of the cast,
will accompany the chance for an hour-long one to one video chat with Lead
Director Georgi Banks-Davies who will give her insight into the world behind
the camera. This is just one example of the many prizes available, so don't
miss out. www.chf.org.uk/auction
Discover | 6Chailey Heritage
into the next
Play weekly for 1 for your chance to
win up to 25,000
FIND OUT MORE
Using the nation's fundraising platform
Unity, when you sign up to our lottery, it's
guaranteed that at least 50p from every 1
played goes to Chailey Heritage Foundation.
The draw takes place every Friday and you
must be over 18 to play.
Registered Charity 1075837 and Company limited by Guarantee 3769775 (England).
7 Winter 2020Celebration Week at Chailey Heritage
At Chailey Heritage Foundation, we have grown used to doing things
differently since lockdown and our annual celebration at the end of the
summer term was no exception. Normally, the staff, children, young
people and their families all come together on site for Celebration Day with
live music, balloon artists, bubble machines and more, but with current
restrictions, celebrations took place over a whole week instead.
The theme for this year was `Hawaii' and the
staff showed incredible creativity in thinking
up engaging and exciting ways for the young
people to get involved. For those children
shielding at home, bespoke activity packs
were posted so they could enjoy the same
activities as their peers at school, including
making flowery photo frames, sensory
(non-alcoholic!) cocktails and a creative arts
exhibition experience. One of our teachers,
Oner Ozdamer, who helped organise
Celebration Week said, "It was amazing to see
the young people engaging with the activities
at home via photos and online video, at the
same time as their peers at school."
Rupert leads the way in the parade.
Teetee gets into the
party spirit during the
Discover | 8Ryan joins his classmates and their families
for a virtual award presentation.
Louis was one of
many pupils able
to join in with the
from home during
Sienna taking part in
the parade with her
during her class
Thanks to the incredible determination and creativity of the
team, Celebration Week was a great success, culminating
in a colourful Hawaii-themed parade on the Thursday. The
young people dressed up in colourful Hawaiian-inspired
outfits, paraded through pathways lined with inflatable palm
trees and passed under a beautiful rainbow balloon archway.
The parade was live-streamed so the young people at home
could watch live with their families and carers. The following
day, certificates and awards were distributed. Oner said, "It
was another year full of achievements, happy moments and
9 Winter 2020Rebound Therapy
Bouncing on a trampoline may sound more like fun than therapy! The
activity, known as rebound therapy, uses trampolines to provide structured
sessions of both passive and active bouncing in a variety of positions,
such as lying, sitting, kneeling and standing, for young people with
The experience is so liberating
that the young people often
do not realise how hard they
are working! Rebound therapy
offers a sense of freedom and
independence, away from the
constraints of their postural
equipment and seating.
Until the completion of the Dream Centre
in October 2019, we were only able to use
a portable trampoline which had to be set
up each time it was used. Thanks to the
generosity of our supporters, and as part
of the Dream Centre, we now have two
trampolines, one is integrated into the
stage with a removable lid, which enables
us to offer more sessions to many more
When Jojo joined Chailey
Heritage, she had lost the ability
to walk due to a degenerative
condition. Through access to
rebound therapy, she was able
to defy the degenerative nature
of her condition - not just by
maintaining muscle tone but by
improving it - firstly by walking
holding hands with a therapist,
then progressing to walking by
herself. She can now walk on
the trampoline unaided. LisaMarie, Jojo's Mum explains,
"The physical benefit of rebound
therapy is obvious, but the
mental benefit is also profound.
The look in Jojo's eyes when
she manages to do something
she can't do in any other
setting, it's the look of pride,
achievement and independence
and that is priceless."A very special gift
Having fun means that rebound
doesn't feel like traditional forms of
physiotherapy, helping children like Louis,
pictured here last year, build positive
associations with it.
For the past 117 years,
Chailey Heritage Foundation
has been transforming
the lives of thousands of
children, young people and
their families, continuing
unswervingly in our
promise not to give up on
empowering them to make
their own choices at every
stage in life. Now more
than ever, during these
difficult times, we want to
ensure that each young
person in our care can
reach their potential for the
next 100 years and beyond.
A gift in your Will helps
to give us long term
stability and security. It
allows us to build new
facilities, buy specialist
equipment, innovate and
adapt technology to aid
learning, and most of all
to allow us to ensure the
young people in our care
have fun, learn and play.
Rebound therapy has helped JoJo to defy
the degenerative nature of her condition
and walk again.
We are extremely grateful
to Jessica Gisby, Associate
Solicitor from Adams and
Remers, for her recent
webinar on legacy giving.
If you were not able to
join, and would like to
watch a recording, email
call 01825 724752.
Winter 2020The BIG Give Christmas
This term, we are planning a big fundraising
project to raise 60,000 to renovate the outside
play area for the youngest children in our
school to make it safer, more appealing and fun!
Chailey Heritage is taking part in the Big Give
Christmas Challenge, the UK's biggest match
funding campaign, and any donations made
between midday on 1st December to midday
on 8th December will be doubled!
Playing outdoors is fun and
boosts Vitamin D which
helps strengthen bones.
A new flat surface will
give Anastasia and her
friends more choice and
independence to move from
the classroom to the outdoor
Discover | 12
There is abundant research to suggest that
play is essential to support the development
of physical, emotional, intellectual and social
abilities. For children with physical and sensory
difficulties, it is even more important that
they have opportunities to develop these skills
with the support of specially trained staff and
carefully designed environments. Many of the
children here have spent prolonged periods of
time in hospital being unable to play. During
that time, sometimes they can learn to become
quite passive and worried about engaging with
the world. They often also need support to
show them how to play or special adaptations
to help them access specialist toys.
Historically, there has always been an
emphasis on outdoor and physical learning
here at Chailey Heritage, as there are
wonderful benefits from being in an outside
area including the fresh air and vitamin D from
sunshine, which strengthens bones. The impact
of the pandemic has only highlighted the need
for suitable outdoor spaces for children. So,
our plans for this new outside play area for the
primary-aged children include:
* flat, soft-padded surface so that the
children can safely roll, practice walking
skills or ride adapted trikes.Make a note on
and show your
with the Big Give
From midday on 1st December
to midday on 8th December the
Big Christmas Challenge will go
live. What does this mean? The
Big Give will double any donations
that you make online to our
campaign to support the muchneeded improvements to the play
area for the youngest pupils.
To donate, visit: www.chf.org.uk
between midday on 1st December
to midday on 8th December.
Play space design for the new garden.
Wonderfully scented plants, textured
surfaces, coloured perspex panels, musical
toys and a mud tray to stimulate and
develop the children's senses.
Mirrors to help children develop a sense of
self and body awareness.
* covered area and small benches that
can be used for outside physiotherapy.
* small bridge to help children practise
their powered driving skills safely whilst
also having fun.
From learning how to cause an effect by
making a noise with a musical instrument,
to developing imaginary play and role play,
the benefits of play are extraordinary. It can
really enhance the children's well-being and
make such a difference to those whose lives
aren't always easy.
Ever tried to ride a bike with one leg? Sounds like hard
work? Well, imagine completing a half marathon in that way,
which is exactly what Guy, who is 22 years old, managed
to achieve at the Life Skills Centre gym recently! Guy, who
began the challenge in January, worked hard throughout
lockdown, so much so that his commitment and hard work
paid off when he reached his target of 21km using just his
right leg on an assisted bike called the Thera Trainer. Guy
has been so motivated by his recent success that he has now
committed to complete a full marathon!
13 Winter 2020Our Chief Executive, Helen Hewitt, explains how
the Charity is responding to the pandemic
Coming to school can be a lifeline for pupils and their families at Chailey
Heritage. On Friday, 20 March, when many schools were closing, we
decided that Chailey Heritage School would remain open to families who
wanted to send their children and this continued right through the bank
holidays and Easter break. Some parents and carers decided to shield pupils
at home but our very creative teachers and their colleagues developed
materials and activities to be used at home, tailored to each pupil.
Our main priority has to be to the young people
living in our residential bungalows who cannot
go home, so we formed `bubbles' to allow these
youngsters to come up to school as they would
normally. Closing the site to families and all
visitors was a tough but necessary decision to
control any potential infections coming on site.
Staff worked very hard and made use of the
wonderful technology to keep the young people
in touch with their families.
Guy and Adam at the
Bank Holiday Rainbow
Ellie and Molly enjoying
a grooming session
with the guinea pigs at
Discover | 14
Reluctantly, we decided we had to close the
Life Skills Centre and our Hub, which provide
on-site day services to young adults from the
local community, to reduce the possibility of
infection. Very reluctantly, we also had to stop
all short breaks. However, our out-reach service,
Pathways, was able to offer some support for
families at home. Thanks to a donation from the
Sussex Community Foundation, we were able
to provide home art activity kits for the young
people who would normally use the art room,
and for our gym instructors to create videos so
that vitally important fitness sessions could still
take place at home.
Initially, PPE was a limiting factor for the
number of young people we could have on site
as all our staff have to wear gloves, aprons and
masks when working with the young people. We
were very grateful for donations from corporate
supporters, Ricardo and PVL, of visors, and
Generation 11 for hand sanitiser.Having a wonderful site where the young people were
able to exercise outside freely in the lovely weather
and visit the animals at Patchwork Farm made a
difficult situation just about bearable. Now almost all
of the pupils are back at school, the Dream Centre is
even more vital to the school day to allow for social
distancing and `bubbling' of school classes. None of
these facilities would be here without the incredible
generosity of supporters whose donations come in
many forms but all of which are invaluable. Whether
donating funds towards the upkeep of the Farm, or
in the case of The Tree Council and Woodland Trust,
through saplings and trees so that we can improve the
Farm with shade for future hot days and develop it into
an even more visually appealing place to visit for the
live music at
As lockdown has eased, we are very pleased now to
be able to have parents on site again in a very
controlled way, using a booking system, wearing PPE
and taking their son or daughter from their bungalow
to a designated place on site. School is operating at
near full capacity and the young people using our
Hub are returning with a limited number of sessions each day. We were also
pleased to start therapeutic riding sessions once again, another completely
voluntarily funded service. A contribution from Tesco Bags of Help plus
donations from the community, allowed us to buy more riding hats and slings
so that the children did not have to share equipment, and that timetable
delays could be avoided.
Whilst monetary donations are always essential, we have also been so
grateful for the creative ways that so many people have continued to be
involved during the pandemic. Thank you for helping us to enable the young
people at Chailey Heritage to continue to pursue their potential despite these
extremely challenging times.
A Secret Santa gift is usually one of the most difficult
presents to buy, and can often end up being a bit of a
waste of money. But if you're stuck for an idea then we
have something that may be one of the most worthwhile
gifts you'll buy, and is guaranteed to be well received. Visit
www.chf.org.uk/SecretSanta, download and print one of
our Secret Santa gift cards for 5, 10, or 15, and make a
donation for the amount you have chosen. Wrap it up, and
we don't think you'll be able to buy a more important Secret
Santa present this year.
15 Winter 2020Please support us
If you'd like to help us continue to provide the services written about in this issue,
we would be extremely grateful. Every penny goes towards helping the children and
young people at Chailey Heritage Foundation.
Phone: 01825 724752 (0900-1700, Mon-Fri)
Text:Text GIVE to 70144 to donate 5
Texts cost 5 plus a standard rate text. Chailey Heritage Foundation
will receive 100% of donation. Please ensure you have the bill payer's
permission (age 16+, UK mobiles only). Customer care: 01825 724752.
Please complete the form below and send it with your donation to:
FUNDRAISING DEPT, CHAILEY HERITAGE FOUNDATION, HAYWARDS
HEATH ROAD, NTH CHAILEY, LEWES, EAST SUSSEX BN8 4EF
BLOCK CAPITALS PLEASE
Title: _______ First name: _________________ Surname: ___________________
_______________________________________ Postcode: ___________________
Telephone: ________________ Email: __________________________________
I enclose a cheque made payable to "CHAILEY HERITAGE FOUNDATION" for
n Gift Aid Declaration: By ticking the box you confirm that you would like Chailey
Heritage Foundation to reclaim tax on your donation(s). You also confirm that you pay
enough UK income or Capital Gains tax to cover all of your donations and understand
that other taxes such as Council Tax and VAT do not qualify you for Gift Aid.
I would like to receive information about:
n Future events n Volunteering opportunities n Fundraising
n How my company can get involved
Preferred method of contact:
n Email n Post
The privacy and security of your personal data is extremely important to us. Please see our privacy
policy (www.chf.org.uk/Fundraising) on how we use and store your personal data. We will process your
data in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and will always store your
personal details securely, only communicating with you in the way that you have requested. You may
unsubscribe at any time by contacting the Fundraising office: 01825 724752 or email: fundraising@chf.
org.uk. You can also update your preferences by visiting www.chf.org.uk/keeping-in-touch.