What is CALM?
CALM charity was originally set up in 1984 by a group of parents who became the first CALM trustees, one of whom designed the original CALM logo. CALM is and always has been run by its parents, patients, their families on a purely voluntary basis, support is also given by medical and other professionals within the community.
CALM works largely from within the Swindon and Marlborough NHS Trust area. CALM holds no offices and no administrative salaries are taken, keeping running costs to an absolute minimum. This ensures all the money and resources available can go to the families and children who need it most.
Through the strength and support of CALM the children who suffer, together with their brothers, sisters and parents, have become one big family giving support to each other, sharing joys and success together as well as the bad times.
What does CALM aim to do?
Our aims and objectives are:
- To improve the quality of life for the children on treatment.
- To give support to the families.
CALM aims to improve the quality of life for both the children going through treatment, and the parents and families during and after treatment. CALM provides support to families to cope with physical, emotional and often financial strain. It is not uncommon for other members of the family to suffer stress related illness.
What else does CALM do?
From the beginning CALM has also donated money to research. Helping to provide better treatments and to better methods of detecting childhood cancer and leukaemia.
CALM provides play facilities for the oncology clinic at the Great Western Hospital.
CALM provides a lot of self-help and mutual support. It is very helpful to a family just beginning treatment to know that someone is there to talk to who really does understand what they are going through and also it helps those families who are sadly bereaved.
Throughout the year various social activities are organised for the families. These include trips to pantomimes and other fun days out. These gives the families a chance to all get together and enjoy a day out away from the hospital environment.
Sometimes local businesses offer to fund the trips and this makes a very special day.
Every year a Christmas party is arranged and of course Father Christmas gets invited. This is always a very happy party and the children thoroughly enjoy themselves.
The CALM logo
The CALM logo was designed by a trustee in 1984 when CALM was originally set up.
The logo shows a tortoise wearing boxing gloves.
This is to represent the children on treatment who are fighting for life, taking it one day at a time during the often long treatment protocols.
Like the Tortoise and the Hare: “Slow and steady wins the race.”
The charity uses the logo on T-shirts, sweatshirts, caps, lapel badges and also trolley tokens to help raise funds.