The Chorley & Leyland Province Supporting Rainbow House
It all began in 2009 when the newly elected Provincial Grand Primo chose Legacy Rainbow House as the Province Charity of the Year.
Nobody in the RAOB locally had heard of Rainbow House (Previously known as The Legacy Rainbow House) But Bro Bob Butterworth wanted to support disabled Children and whilst looking for a charity that met his needs, he stumbled across a new charity opened only 8 years previously.
Bro Bob and the Provincial Grand Secretary paid a visit to the Charity and spoke to Joanne (Joe) Mawdsley the Founder and discovered the remarkable work that the charity do. The Back Story of the Charity revealed similarities to previous Appeals made locally and supported by the Buffs. An appeal was made when a young couple were told their child would never walk. On the first occasion, a special walking frame was acquired for the young “Jack Boyer”. A few years later, jack appeared before us again in another appeal. This time, the parents needed money to take jack to the PETO Institute in Hungary. There, Jack was offered a week with specially trained Physio’s who had developed a new “Holistic “approach to therapy now referred to as “Conductive Education”. This was a treatment not recognised here in the UK and as such, not available. Twice, we raised the substantial funds required to take Jack and his parents to the Institute.
Whilst there, the Physio’s worked with Jack and instructed the parents on how to help Jack with the exercise routines that would help him overcome his limitations and achieve a little independence. Jack and his parents attended a Charity Fundraiser shortly after they returned and jack, on entering the room, to great applause, cast aside his walking aids and walked slowly to the stage.
At Rainbow House, we understood the work they do for the children, because we had seen the results through Jack. And having seen the number of children in need of the services we knew we had to become involved here.
Even more remarkable, when speaking to Joe, was that she started the charity having shared a similar experience with her own two boys William & Thomas. Both boys were severely disabled and Joe was told to take them home and look after them as best she could, because the doctors here could not help. In essence, they were suggesting that she should do her best for the boys, who were not expected to survive into their teens.
Thanks to the lessons of the PETO institute and the highly skilled staff at RAINBOW HOUSE both boys are alive and well and enjoying life. William, with his life threatening Brain and Organ issues, is currently the longest surviving person in the world with his serious condition. Both boys (Now young men) look remarkable and are going from strength to strength thanks to RAINBOW HOUSE. They have now left the Charity, as has Joe, for a new life beyond. And following in their wake, are many other severely disabled children who also make remarkable progress.
At the time of writing this piece (2016), we, the members of the ROYAL ANTEDILUVIAN ORDER of BUFFALOES (The Buffs) have raised in excess of £50,000 both directly and indirectly though other who have been persuaded to support the cause. And our dedication to these fantastic people and the wonderful children goes on.