Unable to speak, Nicole Goulty, 8, gets upset when she is unable to communicate with those around her, leading to her to hurt herself out of frustration. During these episodes, her mother, Amanda, has found that lights and music are the best way to calm her down.
Amanda, who is a customer of OneFamily, a mutual organisation owned by and run for its customers (commonly known as members), applied to the mutual’s Foundation for a personal grant to fund specialist sensory lights and was successful.
Amanda said: “We don’t know what it is about the lights that soothe Nicole but when she gets upset they are the only thing that can calm her down.
“It was hard in the past to see her getting frustrated and upset because she couldn’t communicate with us and it’s awful to see your child hurting themselves.
"We can only imagine how upsetting it is to see your child in distress and not be able to help them in the way you want. We hope Nicole reaps the benefits of the lights for years to come”
“We needed the specialist lights as she can sometimes put them in her mouth and bite them and the regular lights just aren’t safe in those conditions. The ones we have now are much more robust, but sadly that also means they are more expensive and I just couldn’t afford to pay for them on my own. The grant from OneFamily has been an absolute godsend and we can’t thank the foundation enough.”
OneFamily is a mutual organisation providing investments, savings, health and life insurance products to help families work together to meet the financial demands of modern life. As a customer owned business it is run for the benefit of its members.
The OneFamily Foundation redistributes a portion of the organisation’s profits, and aspires to make £5 million available to members over the next five years to help them, their families and their local communities. The Foundation has already helped hundreds of members with personal grants since its launch in 2014.
Julie Stead-Connor, community manager at OneFamily said: “We’re thrilled to have been able to help Amanda purchase the sensory lights for her little girl. We can only imagine how upsetting it is to see your child in distress and not be able to help them in the way you want. We hope Nicole reaps the benefits of the lights for years to come”
Following the merger of Engage Mutual and Family Investments to become OneFamily, members of both organisations can now apply for OneFamily Foundation funding. Members are encouraged to visit https://foundation.onefamily.com/ to apply. Money is available for members which may be used to help them and their families in times of hardship or when support is needed to make things a little bit better.
The OneFamily Foundation (formerly the Engage Foundation) was set up to benefit our members, their families and the communities in which they live and work. There are two ways members can benefit; personal grants or community awards. A number of personal grants of up to £500 are available every month to help them, or someone close to them in times or hardship, or simply to make things a little better. Community awards are open for nominations in Spring and Autumn, with awards of up to £5,000 and £25,000 available to help fund projects in their local community.