Over the next few weeks MyItchyBoy’s nursery are covering the topic of food and healthy eating. I’ve asked if they could take the opportunity to introduce some food allergy awareness to the older children as part of this. Like many parents of allergic children, I feel concern about letting my little boy out into the big, wide world that is school. Horror stories of children being bullied for having allergies and parents getting annoyed with foods being banned in schools don’t help alleviate that concern.
I’d hope that if more nurseries covered the allergy issue when the kids are small then perhaps it will be completely normal for them all by the time they get to school. I’d hope that they would let their parents know if an allergic child is coming to tea or a party and be equipped with the basics of how to accommodate and include that child. I know that this is perhaps a little too ambitious. However, we’ve gotta hope, right?
For the moment though, I know it is small, baby steps. But if I want things to change, if I want my son to feel more ‘normal’ throughout his life, alongside other kids, then I need to put the effort in to make other children and parents more aware.
Did you know this week is Allergy Awareness Week? This week, the great organisation that is Allergy UK has launched their biggest fundraising appeal to date.
They’ve launched a nationwide fundraising appeal to raise £1million to provide specialist allergy nurses within communities across the UK. Allergy UK’s nurses will provide diagnosis for those with allergy symptoms and will advise on treatment and management. They will ensure cases are referred to the most appropriate specialist, where necessary and help patients who have seen an allergy specialist receive advice and support during the sometimes long interval between appointments. Crucially, those admitted to their local A&E department due to an allergic reaction will receive fast track support and assistance from the Allergy UK nurse.
Now, as a parent with an allergic child, that sounds like nothing but good news to me. We have been both lucky and unlucky with the NHS services. However, the health of an allergic child should never be down to luck.
The more people at nurseries, schools, local surgeries and hospitals who are allergy aware, the more confident I will be that my son will be ok out in the real world.
Who can you make more allergy aware today?
Find out more on the campaign on www.allergyuk.org or have a look at #letsfightallergy