• RAF donation raises funds for local Children’s Unit

    by Kirstie Flack | Jan 31, 2017

    Dreamdrops donation from RAF Wyton

    Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust’s charity ‘dreamdrops’ has received a donation of £1,500 for Holly Ward at Hinchingbrooke Hospital.

    The money, which was raised by RAF Wyton’s Darts Association, is being used to purchase those little extras to make the children’s stay on the ward more comfortable.

    Anne-Marie Hamilton, Chairman of the ‘dreamdrops’ fundraising committee said: “We are extremely grateful to RAF Wyton for their continued support, and for this very generous donation.

    “The money will enable us to buy two Etch-a-Sketchs to keep the children occupied when they are ill in bed, plus some much-needed new cot mobiles which can withstand regular cleaning, and also an iPad which will be used not only as a pain distraction, but will also help staff to communicate with patients who cannot communicate verbally/speak English.”

    RAF Wyton’s Station Charities Fund Committee works on behalf of the Commanding Officer, Wing Commander Phil Owen organising station charity events. The committee helps to identify local charities and good causes in the local community, with the aim of providing charitable donations.

    The money donated was raised through their Darts League which takes place twice a year, with between 18 and 20 players participating in each. Every time a match is played, the players pay £1 to play, along with a series of “fines” throughout the season.  On Finals Night, they also run football cards with half the winnings going to their chosen charity, the last two winners kindly donating their winnings to ‘dreamdrops’.

    Warrant Officer Anthony Booth said: “’dreamdrops’ was chosen because we wanted to support a local charity that provides an invaluable service to the community, and with most of the players having small children, the ‘dreamdrops’ charity seemed the obvious choice, and we are proud to support such a worthwhile organisation.”

    Money raised through ‘dreamdrops’ is used to provide additional items for the Special Care Baby Unit and Children’s Ward, as well as children who are cared for at home. For further information on how you can help raise funds for the charity please visit or email

    Photo: Anne-Marie Hamilton, chairman of dreamdrops, Senior Aircraftman Martyn Eskrett, Staff Sergeant Liam Asquith, Senior Aircraftman Tom New and Senior Aircraftman Richard Stanbridge.


  • Children's Charity receives a Little Help donation

    by Kirstie Flack | Jan 26, 2017
    Tesco donation to dreamdrops

    Children's Charity receives a Little Help donation from Huntingdon Tesco Extra

    A charity which supports children and their families at Hinchingbrooke Hospital is to rejuvenate its sensory room, thanks to a £1,000 donation from Tesco Extra in Huntingdon.

    Dreamdrops - Huntingdonshire Children’s Charity, makes a real difference to children and families who use hospital or specialist children’s health facilities.

    It fundraises for the hospital’s Children’s Unit – Holly Ward – and the Special Care Baby Unit, Huntingdonshire’s only neo-natal unit, which is run by Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust and cares for premature and sick babies as well as supporting children who are nursed in the community.

    The donation is part of Tesco’s commitment to support local community groups and charities and will pay for a rejuvenated sensory room at the hospital, which can be used by child patients and those visiting for assessment and other appointments.

    Anne-Marie Hamilton, chairman of the charity, visited the Tesco Extra store in Abbots Ripton Road, Sapley, to receive the cheque from store manager Guy Schwabe and Community Champion Alyce Barber.

    Store manager Guy Schwabe said: “The money raised by the charity is used to provide those items that can help make a child’s hospital stay more comfortable, support young patients and their families at home and get the latest equipment to improve a patient’s experience.

    “We are delighted to be able to help out with this donation and hope the children enjoy the sensory room when it opens.”

    Anne-Marie Hamilton, chairman of the charity, said: “We are absolutely delighted with the donation, which we will use to get the sensory room in the children’s outpatient department back up and running as it is currently closed because it needed refurbishing and updating.

    “This is used by children visiting the outpatients department for appointments, children from the wards, who are well enough to walk downstairs, and, during the holidays, children with disabilities or life-limiting illnesses. 
  • Double winners for Trust’s Shine a Light Award

    by Kirstie Flack | Jan 24, 2017

    sarah, matt and matthew (crop version)Matthew Pearson and Vivien John have been jointly awarded the Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust’s latest Shine a Light award.

    Senior Physiotherapist Matthew from the Trust’s DynamicHealth Service in Huntingdon was nominated by patient and NHS professional Charlotte Ella, who said: “The treatment and advice I received from Matt along with the exercises have taken me from being unable to move, sit and drive without significant pain to being able to walk, sit and drive for short periods and I have reduced the medication I need to take.

    "It is not just the success of this episode of care but his professional manner, flexibility with treatment and encouragement which made this experience so positive for me. As a fellow health professional, I would like to say a particularly big thank you to Matt, he has made a big difference to my ability to move and to my pain levels and I am very grateful to be almost pain free, and I know this will continue to improve with exercises and time.“

    vivien john - dec 16Skills Development Lead Vivien John was nominated by the Trust’s Deputy Chief Nurse Julia Sirett, in relation to a conference Viv recently arranged for support workers, with the support of other local trusts. Julia said: “I am nominating Viv as she put her whole being into this event which was described as 'the first time I’ve ever been offered anything so useful' by one of our staff. The impact on staff was incredible - several people have said they felt valued, supported and were able to connect with others in similar roles during the day.

    "The event would not have happened without Viv's passion and complete commitment to helping this group of staff feel included and supported. This was not just 'part of her job'- her enthusiasm, commitment and passion deserves recognition and listening to the comments from staff on the day, I feel this award would go a small way to demonstrating to others that when you do things with passion and commitment, that is recognised.”

    The “Shine a Light” scheme allows members of the public to nominate staff who have delivered a fantastic service and made a real difference to their lives. Trust staff are also encouraged to nominate their colleagues.

    Every month a member of staff or a team are selected from a list of nominations as the “Shine a Light” award winner. If you would like to nominate a member of staff or a team who has gone the extra mile for you, you can nominate online at

    Photo 1:
    Sarah Saul, Business Manager/Operational Manager DynamicHealth, Senior Physiotherapist Matthew Pearson and Matthew Winn, Chief Executive.

    Photo 2: Matthew Winn, Chief Executive, Vivien John, Skills Development Lead and Julia Sirett, Deputy Chief Nurse.

  • Young families have festive fun in Great Yarmouth

    by CCS Communications | Dec 19, 2016

    Shannon and Finley Charlton decorating cakesStaff from the Norfolk Family Nurse Partnership team were joined by the young parents they support across Great Yarmouth for a fun filled festive celebration this week.

    The event allowed staff from the partnership, provided in Norfolk by Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust, and the families to get creative during messy play where they could make their own Christmas decorations, noise makers and lots more. Alongside the festive fun, a number of partner organisations, including the integrated Contraception and Sexual Health service - ICaSH, Infant feeding, Dental Health and Healthwatch were on hand to provide helpful health and wellbeing advice.

    Representatives from East Norfolk College and Great Yarmouth College were present to provide the young families with information about further education courses.

    Students from Great Yarmouth College provided a pampering opportunity for the young mums with nail painting and hand massages, which were very much enjoyed. Support was also provided by the local children’s centre and Great Yarmouth Library. Eleanor Widdows and daughter Idny Stolworthy learn about healthy eating

    Brittney Lammin and Ashley Emms attended the event whilst expecting their first child in January and really enjoyed the afternoon for all the information and advice they got all in one place. They added that they receive great support from their family nurse Jayne England and are really looking forward to welcoming their new arrival.

    Lisa Lorenzen, Family Nurse Supervisor, added: "It was great to have such a good turnout from the families that we work with and a good time was had by all. We were really impressed with how confident the young parents were with their children and how much they all enjoyed getting involved in the messy play activities we were able to provide.

    "We are grateful that local health service providers and partner agencies were able to showcase their services at the event - the 'health fair' was well received and acknowledge that partnership working really helps our young families to achieve the best outcomes possible for their own, and their children's health and wellbeing."

    The Family Nurse programme encourages young parents to fulfil their aspirations for their baby and themselves through a series of weekly and fortnightly home visits that begin in early pregnancy and continues until the child's second birthday. These visits compliment midwifery care provided and deliver most of the Healthy Child Programme.

  • Local dad to embark on 100 mile trek to raise money for Holly children’s ward

    by Debbie Manning | Dec 08, 2016

    Huntingdonshire resident, Jonathan Smith, plans to walk 100 miles from Hunstanton to Lowestoft in 2017 to raise money for the Holly children’s ward run by Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust at Hinchingbrooke Hospital.

    Jonathan explains:“My son was taken very ill the summer before last.  After two weeks of having an every day cold, followed by sinusitis, he woke up one day with his left eye so purple and swollen he could hardly open it.   He was rushed to hospital andDreamdrops Jonathan Smith Mount Snowdon diagnosed with orbital cellulitis putting him at high risk of blood poisoning, losing his eye or hearing or, even worse, meningitis.  After two weeks of intensive drug treatment, he thankfully recovered.  Having spent every day and night by his side and feeling totally helpless, I decided to raise money to buy more toys, computers and iPads having seen how those already on Holly ward provided a welcome distraction,  enabling the kids to just be children again, irrespective of their illness or condition.   Over two days in Summer 2017, I will be walking nearly 100 miles continuously, day and night, from Hunstanton to Lowestoft including along the Norfolk and England coastal paths.”

    Fund raising for the children’s Holly ward is nothing new to Jonathan explains Anne-Marie Hamilton, Chairman of the Dreamdrops children’s charity:“Jonathan is an inspiration.  In 2016 he completed a 2 day sponsored training weekend including a night trek of Mount Snowdon, used to train those attempting to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.  With minimal sleep, he reached the summit at 4.30 a.m. on the second day.   How he did it, I’m not sure, particularly as he had been unable to train for six weeks prior to the climb due to a back injury.”

    Jonathan added:“I have seen how something as simple as a common cold can turn into something that nearly cost us dearly.  My son’s illness and hospitalisation was so stressful, particularly as my wife was also heavily pregnant at the time, and I really cannot thank the doctors and nurses enough.  Whilst the challenges I have faced have been daunting, raising funds is incredibly rewarding and I’d encourage others to do so; it doesn’t have to involve physical challenges, just donating whatever you can afford makes a difference.  I visited the ward recently and it was great to see how the money I have raised so far as been spent on toys and equipment and to hear how the funds I hope to raise with the coastal walk would be used.”Dreamdrops Jonathan Smith and Sarah Hughes

    Sarah Hughes, Matron for acute children’s services said “Jonathan has not only raised over £700 himself, he has inspired others to do so.  He persuaded Liverpool Football Club and the band UB40 to donate items for auction and Tesco’s coffee shop in Huntingdon raised £250 for us having been approached by Jonathan.   Everyone on the ward is very grateful to him and the toys and equipment he has funded are making a real difference to the children we care for during their time on the ward.  We wish him every success with his 100 mile trek!”

    If you would like to donate to Jonathan’s fund-raising coastal walk visit:

  • Outstanding Achievement Awards for Excellence in Encephalitis Healthcare

    by Phillipa Davies | Dec 08, 2016

    Staff from the Oliver Zangwill Centre (OZC) have received awards for the difference they’ve made to those affected by encephalitis.

    OZC Prof Barbara Wilson Encephalitis outstanding achievement lifetime awardProfessor Barbara Wilson, OBE, and founder of the OZC, will receive the Outstanding Achievement Award for Excellence in Encephalitis Healthcare within the Lifetime Achievement category.  She said: “I was thrilled, honoured and delighted to learn of this award. It means a great deal to me as I have been involved in the Encephalitis Society since its inception in 1994.”

    OZC rehab team - Encephalitis outstanding achievement awardBarbara also nominated Sue Bretnall, James Pamment and Jessica Fish for a piece of work they completed with Eddie, a 69-year old man who had rehabilitation after encephalitis left him with severe memory loss. This nomination resulted in the team being awarded the Outstanding Achievement Award for Excellence in Encephalitis Healthcare within the Rehabilitation Team.

    Through the rehabilitation programme Eddie was able to learn to use strategies to compensate for his memory difficulties, but only with support, so the team recommended ongoing support was necessary. However, no funds were available, so, the team recruited and trained a group of volunteer psychology students to support Eddie’s continued strategy use, one or two mornings per week each, so that all weekdays were covered.

    This arrangement has been in place for more than a year and feedback from is very positive. The trio said: “Eddie is participating in more community activities and the volunteers enjoy their work and are learning a lot from it. Eddie’s wife can relax knowing that he is in good hands, and not only is she able to retain her role as a wife rather than becoming a carer but she can also pursue voluntary work herself.

    “The team is delighted to receive the award and massive thanks go to the student volunteers for their hard work and commitment, without which the intervention could not have been a success. We’d also like to commend Eddie and his family for their resilience in overcoming the challenges they’ve experienced and making the most of life after encephalitis.”

    The team also expressed their appreciation for working within the OZC and the Trust, for the support of both intensive neuropsychological rehabilitation and innovative solutions to challenges in clinical practice.

    The Outstanding Achievement Awards for Excellence in Encephalitis Healthcare were presented on 5 December by the Encephalitis Society at an event in London.

  • Award for Dental Receptionist for helping unwell patient

    by Debbie Manning | Dec 05, 2016

    Vanessa Callaghan, Dental Receptionist at the Cambridge Dental Services at Brookfields Health Centre, Cambridge has been awarded the Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust’s Shine a Light award after being nominated by her colleagues for her help with an unwell patient.November Shine a Light winner - Matthew Winn with Vanessa Callaghan and Maria Ross Russell

    Neeta Patel, MOS Surgeon said: “We recently had a phone call to our reception from the wife of one of our patients who had become unwell following a dental surgical procedure. Vanessa spoke calmly and clearly and firmly directed her to call the ambulance.  The patient’s wife later called us back to say her husband was fine and that he was admitted to hospital and was very grateful for Vanessa's help.

    Maria Ross-Russell, Head of Dental Services, said: “We are so lucky to have Vanessa in the ‘front’ office.  Vanessa acted in a very professional and calm way to help this couple at what I imagine was a very scary situation for them both”.

    The “Shine a Light” scheme allows members of the public to nominate staff who have delivered a fantastic service and made a real difference to their lives. Trust staff are also encouraged to nominate their colleagues.

    Every month a member of staff or a team are selected from a list of nominations as the “Shine a Light” award winner. If you would like to nominate a member of staff or a team who has gone the extra mile for you, you can nominate online at

    (Photo: Matthew Winn, Chief Executive, Vanessa Callaghan, Dental Receptionist and Maria Ross-Russell, Head of Dental Services).

  • Local ‘Green’ Scheme wins silver award

    by Debbie Manning | Nov 18, 2016

    Three local organisations jointly scooped the silver prize at the glittering awards ceremony which recognised their recycling project. 

    Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust, Cambridgeshire & Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust and Serco won the ‘Green Apple Award’ held in the House of Commons, London last Friday (11 November 2016) in the Environmental Improvement.category for their joint segregation project initiative.

    Chris Sharp, Matron - Infection Prevention and Control, Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust explained: “We were delighted to be presented with the silver award.  Our scheme was set up to audit and review all of the Trust’s waste streams. Through a series of simple changes to operational practices large benefits to both compliance and cost effectiveness are predicted and these benefits, along with the ease of introduction, have been recognised by the judging panel in issuing the national award.

    “The departmental visits allowed for staff involvement and improved local awareness. We found that staff are committed to improving their recycling compliance where possible.  Building on this success the Trust hopes to undertake a similar audit to all departments within the Trust.”

    David Tucker, Waste Manager, Serco ASP said: “I am absolutely delighted with the receipt of the Green Apple Award. This recognises the hard work that has been put in by all parties concerned over the past few years in improving the waste management practices throughout each Trust with the associated benefits of improved compliance, good environmental practice and cost efficiencies. All in all a great demonstration of close partnership working.”

    Nicola Sharp, Head of Infection Prevention and Control at CPFT said: “It is great to be recognised for a collaborative piece of work that will make a difference not only to our staff and patients, but to the environment too.”

    The Awards were established in 1994 as an annual campaign to recognise, reward and promote environmental best practice around the world.

    The aims of the awards are to improve environmental performance, encourage the efficient use of resources, enhance the competitiveness of organisations, support the wider goals of sustainable development including social benefits through community and staff involvement and to help the Green Apple Award winners to benefit from their environmental endeavours.

    The Awards are run by The Green Organisation – an independent, non-political, non-activist, non-profit environment group.

    Photo (from left to right): 
    Roger Wolen - Founder and Managing Director of the Green Organisation
    Chris Sharp - Matron, Infection Prevention and Control, CCS NHS Trust
    Nicola Sharp - Head of Infection Prevention and Control, CPFT
    David Tucker  - Waste Manager, Serco ASP

  • Dreamdrops chosen Charity of the Year

    by Debbie Manning | Nov 17, 2016

    The Chairman of Huntingdonshire District Council, Cllr Peter Bucknell, has nominated Dreamdrops as one of his charities to support during 2016/2017.

    Cllr Bucknell visited the children’s unit at Hinchingbrooke Hospital, run by Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust, on Thursday 17 November where he met with Anne-Marie Hamilton, Chairman of the Dreamdrops charity.

    Cllr Bucknell said: “I wanted to support children, carers (both adult and children), and bereaved adults, in the local community and chose Dreamdrops as one of my three charities to support.”

    The visit included a tour around the Children’s Outpatient Unit at Hinchingbrooke Hospital where Anne-Marie Hamilton explained how the money raised for the charity benefits children who are sick and are nursed either in hospital or in the community.

    Anne-Marie said: “Dreamdrops was set up with the aim of raising money to buy all those little (and large) extras that are not covered by NHS public funds but which make a hospital stay more comfortable - or less stressful - for children and their families.

    “Past donations have been used to purchase play equipment for hospitalised children and those awaiting their appointment, a sensory garden at the hospital and sensory equipment, a Wendy House for the outside play area, new chairs on the Special Care Baby Unit for breastfeeding mothers and screens to preserve their privacy, as well as a camera to provide photographs for parents of their newborns.

    “The charity's work doesn't just stop at the hospital door, as funds are also used to help sick children who are being cared for at home.  We are extremely grateful to Cllr Bucknell for choosing Dreamdrops as one of his charities to support this year.”

    For more information on Dreamdrops, or if you would like to raise money for the charity, please contact the Charity Administrator on 07790 911541 or via email at

    In the parents day room

    Photo: In the parents day room with (from left to right)  Sarah Hughes - Matron,  Anne Marie Hamilton – Chairman of dreamdrops,  Cllr Peter Bucknell – Chair of Hunts DDC and Mike Andrews, Vicechairman of dreamdrops,  Sandie White, Ward Sister.

  • Watch the video from our first local Healthcare Support Worker Conference

    by Debbie Manning | Nov 17, 2016

    On 11 November 2016 Health Education England Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Workforce Partnership celebrated the role of the healthcare support worker by inviting their employees to the first local Healthcare Support Worker Conference for clinical and non-clinical staff.

    The aim of the conference was to recognise and celebrate the dedication of this workgroup in providing quality services to our patients and clinicians, deliver first-hand information on development opportunities and to demonstrate methods of resilience that can be adopted in day to day practice.

    The event was attended by approximately 90 staff across eight organisations and funded by Health Education England.

    This is the result:



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