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[23 MAR 99] COVENTRY UNIVERSITY PRESS RELEASE
University Launches Massage Programme For Local Children

Coventry University's Psychosocial Rheumatology Research Centre has received a grant of 60,000 from an anonymous donor, to develop a massage programme for children with disabilities, in partnership with the City's Tiny Tim Centre.

The programme, which begins in April, aims to train parents of local children with disabilities, predominantly cerebral palsy, at the Tiny Tim Centre, Whitefriars Street, Coventry.

Director of the Research Centre, Professor Julie Barlow, explains:

"The massage training programme, developed here at the Centre by Lesley Cullen, will help promote and cultivate the natural bond between parent and child that can often be disrupted by disability.

"When a child is in hospital, in an incubator or surrounded by tubes, equipment and healthcare professionals, the parents can feel squeezed out and are often unable to make the necessary physical contact due to treatment being delivered. The massage programme initially aimed at children aged five and under, will help parents establish the physical link and bond with their child", adds Professor Barlow.

Children with disabilities also often experience muscular problems which can lead to sleep disturbance. An effective programme of massage can help provide parents and children alike with a good night's sleep.

Professor Barlow and her team will monitor parents' confidence and feelings throughout the programme, and whether they are better able to manage as a result.

The programme is being put together with Stan Duncombe, founder of the Tiny Tim Centre and a member of the London and Counties Society of Physiologists.

"Another important aspect of the programme is that it will bring together parents with similar problems and provide them with a support network. It is also hoped that a parent and toddler group will be formed, integrating disabled and able-bodied children", concludes Professor Barlow.

For further details or to book a place on the massage programme for children with disabilities call 01203 838051.

MORE INFORMATION:
Cyrrhian Macrae or Floyd Jebson  01203 838352

 

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CWN / Education / Universities / Coventry University / 23 Mar 99

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