Customer Stories*
July 15, 2013  •  by Jane Carter

SPOTLIGHT: The Joshua Tree – Part 1

If you needed further proof that hope & inspiration can come from the darkest of places, just look to UK-based charity, The Joshua Tree. Born the from the personal experience of it’s founders, The Joshua Tree provides support to families who are going through a traumatic time caring for a child suffering from a condition that seriously affects their immune system (commonly childhood cancers), giving them a place to spend quality time together away from the hospital routine. In the first part of our two-part interview, we sat down with Joshua Tree Charity Manager Jo Pritchard to talk about her experiences at The Joshua Tree and their latest event, “The Annual Fun Run”.  


Ticketbud: Tell us a little more about The Joshua Tree! What does the organization do to raise money, awareness and support for children suffering from conditions that seriously affects the immune system, namely childhood cancer? Jo Pritchard: The Joshua Tree Holiday House and Support Centre for Courageous kids and their Families is a small charity founded to relieve the unbelievable stress and strain put on all members of families trying to cope with a child with cancer or other immune suppressing condition.The aim is to reduce the fear and isolation brought by diagnosis and subsequent treatment, which is often onerous, invasive and usually lengthy, especially in the case of leukaemias. We are raising funds to build a holiday house for up to 4 families in similar situations at a time, to have a free short break away from the confines of the hospital and their home, often the only two places a child with very low immunity will see.  It will enable the family members to spend time together to rebuild their bonds and to share with other families, often the only chance a sibling or working parent may have.  We will also soon be offering an outreach family worker to help support families until the House is built, providing holistic practical and emotional support. TB: How did you get involved with The Joshua Tree? What is your favorite part about working with the organization? JP: I became involved when my own child was in hospital on treatment for Leukaemia, at the same time as the founders’ son.  Listening to other families talking in the waiting and treatment rooms underlined the depth of need for our support and hence The 163546_10152786965245578_893325226_nJoshua Tree was born.  My favourite part is the variety each day brings and meeting so many new people.  For every heart wrenching case that needs support there is a wonderful volunteer or donor somewhere, and there is so much pleasure to be had in bringing this together and making it happen, with fun events in fab places with lovely people TB: In April, The Joshua Tree hosted its “Annual Fun Run”. Tell us a little about the event! What is your favorite part of the event? JP: 7 years ago the event started as a small fundraiser added onto the more serious sprints for Vale Royal Athletics Club.  Now it is its own event, drawing people nationally from all over the UK, with over 360 entrants.  I think I have two joint favorite parts – the look on the costume winners faces when they receive their prizes and the determination visible in the start of the 2.5km runners as they all line up at the start – fantastic buzz _______________________________________________________________ The Joshua Tree actively encourages people to organize their own events in aid of the charity and events can be as big or as small as people wish, ranging from raffles and sponsored headshaves to musical evenings and plant sales. Fundraising materials including posters, balloons, sponsorship forms and safety advice are all available to help you plan your event as well. For information on how to organize your own events, donate to the charity and more, please visit Stay tuned for part 2 of our interview coming tomorrow!  ]]]]> ]]>