Tom's Testimony

Dear Rachel,

The first time I saw you was after my accident and this is what happened.  I went to twin lakes for my birthday treat and towards tea time I went on a cup and saucer ride.  I went on it once, it was fun so i went on it again and my uncle (James) was spinning the barrel round and round.  There was a bolt sticking out of the bottom of the pole in the middle.  The bolt had already been taped up and the bolt had pushed through the tape and caught my lace and wrapped my leg round the pole three times and snapped my left leg.  It was horrific.  Thank you so much for when we went to draytom Manor because you helped and encouraged me to go on the bigger rides which helps me to go to bigger theme parks like Alton Towers.  At the end of every session we always played games.  I came to yours to have some counselling at the end I was to go home with a happy memory.  I remember when I beat the king of Uno (Rachel) that was so much fun we had some good times didn't we.  I still have memories today of what we did: Blob pictures, Uno, Mandala's and that first aid kit we did on my last session.

Yours sincerely  


Tom's Testimony


Parent testimony about son's care

After my sons accident I was really worried about getting Thomas the right help that he needed regarding his very traumatic accident. He was in a really bad state physically and mentally, I just didn't know where to start to find him the help he needed. I was also contemplating about wether Thomas would cope talking to a stranger or even being comfortable around someone else as he was very clingy.

He wouldn't talk about what happened he always put his head down and go really quite when anyone asked what happened to your leg with him having a full leg cast and in a wheelchair.

Rachel was highly recommended by one of my family friends and they said how great she was. I then went onto the Burden Basket Website and had a look into what Rachel was all about. 

Something was telling me that this was the lady that would be able to help Thomas. 

A meeting was arranged to meet Rachel and see what we thought and what Thomas thought. 

Well we went away with a good feeling that we had found someone who Thomas clicked with straightaway and if that was ok with Thomas then we were happy. 

Throughout my sons therapy I found Rachel to be a very nice, friendly, and helpful person. Who was clearly good with children and also easy to talk to. The longer we went on the more Thomas felt like he was being helped and was helping cope with what had happened better than if he hadn't had any therapy.

He was in such a dark place at the time of his accident leaving him very frustrated,angry,upset,terrified and resenting his siblings because it happened to him. 

I couldn't have chosen a better person than Rachel Rayner to help my son and myself in a way that my son was being taken care of with the kind of help I couldn't give him. 

I found Rachel was always there to help me when things weren't too good with Thomas at home. I could let her know what had happened before sessions then she would have an idea Incase Thomas wouldn't talk much. 

Some days Thomas went into a session very upset and not very talkative and when he had finished a session he would be all smiles and happy because they would finish a session with games and laughter which was very nice to see both Thomas and Rachel giggling and chatting about who won the games etc.

We had to do an exposure Program where we as a family went back to a theme park and Thomas had a Counselling session for him to just be around the park and take in the sounds and atmosphere and see how he got on. 

This day was a big test not just for Thomas but for us especially me as I was more nervous of how Thomas was going to feel and react as we hadn't been anyway else since his accident. 

Rachel came along with us to give Thomas the help and support he needed. By the end of the day Thomas had been on a few rides and was a lot calmer thanks to Rachel's help and support. 

Thomas felt like he wasn't on his own as Rachel was there to help and talk to him all the way through.

Thomas has many different coping strategies that he can use to help him in the future that Rachel has taught him and how to keep calm in situations he couldn't of done before his therapy. 

I would definitely recommend Rachel to anyone who has children and especially who have been traumatised one way or another. 

I just want to thank you for all that you did for Thomas and help me in knowing Thomas was in safe hands and that he has come such a long way but wouldn't have done it without your help.

Big thanks from myself and Thomas.

Mrs Emily Cowling

Lakeside School Feedback 2017

All children and parent/carers accessing the Hope Listening Ear are asked to give feedback.  Here are some comments;

Pupil Q- name something you have learned from using HOPE

"That if I ever need to talk I can go back."

Parent Q - What did you like best about HOPE?

"The fact that my child has the confidence to talk to someone about anything that is bothering or concerning them."

"That it helps in a non invasive way."

Parent Q - Has HOPE been helpful? 

"Yes - it has really helped my child's confidence and they are now back to their old self enjoying school - they are also much happier talking to me about their problems."

Parent Q - What suggestions do you have for changing the HOPE project?

"For you to carry on offering such good support to any child who needs help/support - Thank you [name] x."

HOPE Training feedback

"Lots of information to be able to get started.  Has opened my mind to different things and has changed some of my opinions.  The ‘ACES’ video was particularly striking.  Feel less scared about certain situations"

"I have found this training very helpful.  It has been good to have the 4 days to go through the information and it has been delivered excellently.  I am excited to adapt what I have learnt to support identified in school.  I am also keen to think about my staff’s wellbeing and I am gong to plan 1/2 termly slots for them to have ‘supervision’ times to ensure they are getting supported too."

"I have really enjoyed the training and it will help me within my role.  Thank you"

"The delivery of the training was excellent and very informative.  The course has given me a new found confidence in my job role.  Thank you!"

Full HOPE audit report here