Monday, 23 September 2013

Here we go loop-di-loop

So the countdown has begun!

2 weeks until I attempt 24 hours of hula hooping.

Now, I have to admit I haven't been practising as much as I probably should have. My hula hoop has been taunting me from the end of my bed. The first day I was so good at it I figured I would be fine....! The second time I went to do iti had just worked out my shoulders so keeping my arms up was tough! Third time I tried I found something new out..... Now those who know me know that I am somewhat pear shaped.... (They don't call me white beyonce for nothin')

Jen giving it her all!
This, it turns out, is half advantage, half terrible terrible disadvantage. If I keep the hula hoop above my bum, on a small part of me (probably the smallest) I can keep it going for ages. As soon as it hits my bum it all goes haywire and the hoop heads straight for the floor! It means I am constantly in fear of my own behind!!!

No idea where to put my arms! 

Leith shakin it a goodun

As for my arms and keeping those elevated I am definitely considering designing some sort of ceiling suspended slings?! Although I am afraid of typing "suspended arm sling" into google. I don't think I am looking for what might crop up!

Anyway, this blog is to bring everything back to the reason I am taking on all these ridiculous things... The Autism Trust.
Now I hope you have all ventured onto their website ( and seen what I am talking about. But I understand you are all busy people and the likes of twitter and daily mail are usually more entertaining commute reads... So I am going to tell you all about it here...

The Autism Trust was set up by a lady called Polly Tommey whose son has autism. She set up Polly's Place where young adults can feel safe and be in an environment where the people there all understand what it is like to love or work with or even have autism.
Autism is a spectrum disorder which means that no two people that have it are the same. It cannot be cured, it can take all forms and is something that families have to deal with 24/7 for their entire lives.
The thing is, everyone reading this blog probably knows someone with autism or someone who has a family member with autism.

Children and adults with autism don't look any different and so they are easy to overlook. But their autism means that many of them have to have 24 hour support. Autism affects each person differently but it seems to affect all people in one unanimous way which is their ability to interact socially.

This means that a lot of young adults find it hard to get jobs and lead a normal adult life. Especially as once children with autism reach the age of 19 there is no support. There are smaller organisations that are able to take on young adults but these are few and far between with long waiting lists. Meaning all support comes down to the families.

Polly's Place gives young adults the opportunity to practice simple skills like using a till, or computers or interacting with customers. Polly's Place helps these young adults gain a certificate proving they have these valuable skills and give them a chance of leading lives where employment is a part of it.

Places like this are so important not only for the children but also for the parents and families. To have a community of other families that know what it's like to live with autism and to have the chance to have a couple of hours of respite where they know their children are safe and are learning skills that will increase their independence.

Polly's Place also helps in other ways. There is a shop and online store that sells pieces created by the children and young adults as well as those who love and support them. Beautiful handmade products created by talented people. The profits from pieces sold go to funding this fabulous haven and supporting the families who need it so much.

 There will be more on stories coming from this wonderful place to come. but for now please look at their website! And on the weekend I am attempting this foolish challenge we will have a selection of bits and pieces from the shop available and hopefully some of the lovely volunteers from Polly's Place will join us.

So everyone, please come and support me and my wonderful team on the weekend of 5th and 6th October at Pavilion Leisure Centre Bromley (You can access through the shopping centre - by Debenhams - or behind the leisure Centre - turn right at boots in the high street).

We will need all your support and cheering and someone MAY have to hold my arms up for a while! And even if none of this tempts you, I am going to look a fool so it may even just be worth a picture! :)

Me and Jen plan to practice a little more this weekend so hold fire for more fun! and hopefully better pics!


Hope.... Out

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