JANUARY 2018

  • MY #CBEEBIESRADIO STORY ABOUT #ALLERGIES TAKES THE CAKE

    AUTHOR: // CATEGORY: Children's Health, Children's stories, Education, Parenting

    #DrRanj reads my story Jamil’s Food Challenge and shares top tips on what to do if you or someone you know has a #foodallergy https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/radio/jamils-food-challenge

    It’s not much fun not being able to share the same food as your friends and it’s not much fun having to spend your birthday in the hospital allergy clinic.  But when the usual allergy tests suggest his body can now cope with eggs, Jamil has to decide whether to stay safe and only eat the food he already trusts or, with the help of his specialist nurse, expand his diet.  Knowing how poorly eggs have made him in the past, it is a scary notion and Jamil has to be very brave.  But maybe, just maybe, this year he won’t have to blow out the candles on a pretend birthday cake made of cardboard but will be able to have his first ever ‘proper’ birthday cake, and share it with all his friends!

    Having known children with very restrictive diets, I have been in awe of their patience and resilience.   From a distance, it can be easy to condemn them as ‘picky’ and to think they’re just being difficult.  But often these children are incredibly brave, having to guard themselves against things the rest of us take for granted.

    My thanks to #CBeebiesRadio for helping with the child testimonies and medical research.  In the spirit of good public service broadcasting, I was happy to  undertake the necessary research into birthday cakes and bouncy castles.

     

     

  • NEW #CBEEBIESRADIO SERIES ABOUT #ALLERGIES : IT’S EYEWATERINGLY GOOD!

    AUTHOR: // CATEGORY: Children's Health, Children's stories, Education, Parenting, Screenwriting, Writing for Children

    I’m so glad to have written the stories for this fantastic series helping kids across the UK who have allergies, while making others aware of how they can help.   https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/radio

    Starting from 10th Jan with a new show every Wednesday until 7th February , this cracking series about allergies is not to be sniffed at.

    I’ll stop right there with the puns because allergies are only funny until you have one yourself.  Then it can be tiresome, disruptive, frightening, especially when you’re not yet even six.  To be the odd one out, with special food, special gloves, special medicine, when you’re feeling poorly, doesn’t feel very special at all.

    This series of five audio downloads explores different chronic conditions that some children may suffer: asthma, allergies to pet dander, nuts, dairy, pollen… what’s it like to suddenly react badly to something?  What’s it like when it happens to your friend? What’s it like to have to guard what you eat or drink or touch?   What’s it like to not be able to eat your own birthday cake?

    When you put it like that, it’s all a bit grim.

    So I didn’t put it like that.

    After all, these stories are for CBeebies and CBeebies is never grim.  So expect fun stories with nutty detectives, cub scouts, tennis aces, guinea pigs and pigeons, all read beautifully by the wonderfully reassuring Dr Ranj.

    Of course the stories answer all of those questions above: I based them on patient testimony and the expertise of a specialist nurse.  You can hear some of the children talking about their conditions in each episode as well.  My lovely producers were pleased with the result. I hope that you and your little ones will be too.