St Albans mum and son help raise diabetes helpline profile

Diabetes UK Chief Executive Barbara Young presents Shaun Foley and his mother Tina with a certificat

Diabetes UK Chief Executive Barbara Young presents Shaun Foley and his mother Tina with a certificate of thanks for their fundraising - Credit: Archant

A city mum is lending her support to a new helpline for parents of children with Type 1 diabetes that ensures schools are giving them the care they deserve.

The helpline has been launched by Diabetes UK Care as part of its Type 1 diabetes: Make the Grade campaign, which aims to ensure diabetic children are happy and healthy at school.

Tina Foley, from Marshalswick in St Albans, said: “My son Shaun is 14 and has always received excellent care and support from his secondary school. We feel very lucky and well-supported.

“However I know that this isn’t the case in every school. I have heard of schools which don’t make the grade with regard to children’s care across Hertfordshire.

“Some children face discrimination in relation to school trips and extra-curricular activities, which means they are effectively excluded from leading a full and active school life.”

Tina and Shaun were presented with a certificate from the charity’s chief executive Barbara Young for their fundraising efforts which as a family has seen them raise over £10,000.

They have given their backing to the new helpline that is supported by the charity’s partnership with Tesco and will provide telephone and email support to parents who are trying to get the school care their child is entitled to.

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It was introduced following a landmark new law, which means all schools in England will be legally required to provide support to children with medical conditions such as Type 1 diabetes, asthma and epilepsy.

Sally Caldwell, schools helpline manager, said: “We know that while many schools offer fantastic support for children with Type 1 diabetes some parents can really struggle to get the support that their child needs.

“In those circumstances our volunteers will be able to let parents know what support their children should be getting from their school, how they can make an official complaint and answers to important questions such as what should be in their child’s Individual Healthcare Plan.”