Fun – and informative – for all the family! Marie Edgar describes the London Epilepsy Weekend for all. This event is designed to bring together people with epilepsy for a relaxed and enjoyable weekend – where you can make lasting friendships for the future
Sometimes, life gets so busy and stressful. Especially if you have epilepsy, or if someone close to you does – it sometimes feels like no one in the world can appreciate what it’s like. What you really need is just to take a breath, relax and talk to someone who gets it.
An Epilepsy Action event can offer you just that. Between 1 and 3 November, the London Epilepsy Weekend for all will be held at Baden Powell House.
The event begins at 3pm on the Friday, which is reserved simply for arrival and evening dinner. The event begins proper on the Saturday morning – with an exciting two-day programme of events.
Accommodation is available onsite – so if you can spare three days to join us, there’ll be time and space for everyone. If not, just come along for the Saturday or Sunday – whatever suits you best.
One of the main aims of the weekend is to give people with epilepsy and their families the chance to meet each other. The best people to help support you are the ones who’ve been in the same situation. Come and network with people who understand you – to build lasting relationships and support networks for the future.
There will be plenty of social opportunities. The venue includes nice and relaxed spaces in which to meet new people. These include a refectory that has computers, a pool table and table football. There’s a roof terrace boasting a table tennis table and Swingball. A social event is planned for the Saturday evening, including a delicious dinner.
What to do
While there will be plenty of room for relaxation, there’s also plenty to keep you busy! A whole range of different presentations, workshops and activities are planned. These might be designed to offer you information, teach you a skill or just entertain the children.
In terms of advice and information, the weekend will include sessions from a range of high-profile epilepsy experts. Prof Helen Cross will be giving a presentation about children and epilepsy. Dr Hannah Cock will be speaking about managing some issues that go alongside epilepsy. These will be things like anxiety and depression, and the impact that medicines can have on your bones.
There will also be sessions dedicated to planning for pregnancy and effective care of both mum and baby afterwards. There may even be the possibility of developing a network for mums with epilepsy. Find out more about EEGs and MRI and other scans by experts in this field as well as why dental health is important for people with epilepsy.
Further information sessions will be provided by other charities, including information about sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) from SUDEP Action. Meanwhile, the UK charity Support Dogs will offer a session about seizure alert dogs. Emma Williams from Matthew’s Friends will give a presentation about the ketogenic diet.
Other sessions across the weekend will be less related to epilepsy – but should still be fun! Often, when you’re living with epilepsy, you can get tired of being told you can’t do certain things. Cycling may have been one of them.
There will be an all-ability cycling workshop on Sunday afternoon that may give you the chance to do something you haven’t done before. The session will be fully supervised with all safety precautions taken – so that you can try scooting around on a cycle and enjoy yourself with everyone else.
Other fun sessions include craft sessions where you can try your hand at something creative. There will also be several very child-friendly workshops such as a drumming workshop and a balloon-modelling and magic session.
The London Epilepsy Weekend for all event welcomes anyone who’d like to participate. If you’d like to come and get involved in the weekend, read more or book your place on the Epilepsy Action website. Alternatively, contact the local services team by calling 0113 210 8787.
The London Epilepsy Weekend for all promises to be a fun, valuable and supportive event. A comprehensive – and fun – programme will be great for people with epilepsy, their families, their carers, their doctors and our generous volunteers. Get involved now to make this weekend a life-changing experience for everyone involved!