BTF hosts first ever conference for children with thyroid disorders.

Hosted at the Thackray Medical Museum in Leeds in April 2014, the BTF’s first Children’s Conference was a not-to-be-missed opportunity for over 25 families. Parents made the journey from all over the UK, and two families came especially from Ireland and France.

While the children were entertained by BTF staff and volunteers the parents learned about thyroid disease, how it can affect their children and how to deal with a long term health condition.

Several endocrine specialists from Leeds General Infirmary made presentations, led workshops and were available to answer questions throughout the day. There were very helpful and positive talks by teenagers Katy and Hannah on how they have coped with their thyroid condition and not let it rule their lives. Also a parent’s perspective was presented and discussed by mums. These talks were particularly reassuring to the more newly diagnosed parents of younger children.

One mum, Emma, who came with her eight year old daughter Chloe said ‘We had a lovely day and Chloe had the chance to realise that she wasn’t the only one with a dodgy thyroid. That was the main reason for us to attend, to make her aware of others just like her. She said on the train on the way home ‘This has been the best day ever!’ and was so pleased when she got ready for bed because she realised that she already had butterfly lights and a lampshade, and has now added to them the things she made at the meeting.’

Another parent told us that the aspect of the day she most enjoyed was the chance to meet other parents. ‘I feel that seven years of worry about my child were lifted from my shoulders as everyone seemed to have very similar experiences and reactions.’

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The BTF is very grateful to the Society for Endocrinology who awarded the charity a Patient Support Grant which made the event possible.

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