Molly Ollys supports West Midlands children’s palliative care

Oct 20, 2023 | News

Birmingham Children’s Hospital is to become a training hospital in Paediatric Palliative Medicine and will be providing training for two new consultants thanks to funding by Molly Ollys. News of the £310k funding, which will double the number of existing roles in the region, came during a special event in Birmingham this week (17th)) hosted by Molly Ollys Founder Rachel Ollerenshaw.

The donation, supported by corporate supporters, Oakland International, in Redditch, will to cover two years of training for the consultants.

Molly Ollys funded the region’s first ever consultant in paediatric palliative medicine between 2018 and 2021, since when the post has been permanently incorporated by the NHS.

There are currently only 25 such speciailists in the UK. Nationally there is a shortage of between 50 to 60 consultants within this specialist Paediatric Palliative Medicine service which helps enable patients to live their best lives.

Rachel said: “The need for Consultant-led Paediatric Palliative care is far more important than many realise and primarily that is the case because it is a world that few people fortunately have inhabited. From our own experiences with Molly we realised the importance of enabling a good death. Molly had a choice, as parents and her family we had a choice thanks to the support of a consultant in Warwickshire where we live. However, we realised that that care was different down the road in the West Midlands. So, Molly Ollys plugged that gap by paying for the first consultant for three years in order to prove the need for the NHS to then take this forward. Once proved Birmingham Children’s Hospital quickly appointed a second consultant with the help of Acorns Hospice. Two consultants meant that BCH could become a training hospital. We are therefore delighted that we can continue this project with the funding of training for two more consultants. From zero to four in a seven year period is a big step change and will have a positive long term impact for palliative children in the West Midlands and surrounding areas.”

Rachel added: “We are extremely proud to be able to support this latest project but none of it would be possible without the magnificent help of key corporate supporters. Oakland International have been incredible. They have really taken time to listen, to meet health professionals and to understand the significance.”

The funding has been particularly welcomed by the hospital’s current Consultants Yifan Liang and Christine Mott. Yifan said: “With the current consultant numbers, we are only capturing the most needy children and there’s a lot more need that we could be addressing. This vital business funding will enable us to provide the capacity to serve families better through planning, clinical reviews and which will be more sustainable for everyone concerned. Thanks to Molly Ollys, Oakland International, and other corporate businesses supporting this much needed initiative, we are starting to see change and helping families in the way they want and need for the short and long term, and getting the end results for individuals as we roll it out and help more people.”

Oakland and members of BCH were among special guests at an informal drinks evening at a Birmingham city centre venue on Tuesday night, when Rachel provided an overview of how their support is making a real and significant, long-term impact to so many children across the region.

Co-Founder and Group CEO of Redditch-based Oakland International, Dean Attwell, said: “Molly Ollys is a truly wonderful charity supporting so many children and their families through such difficult times. The link to Birmingham Children’s Hospital is another example of an under-resourced but much-needed service identified and championed by Molly Ollys and we are delighted to be part of the funding support team. It was a pleasure to have attended the launch event in Birmingham with so many other businesses and potential supporters. We were happy to share our experiences of the journey so far and to show other potential sponsors what it means to get involved, both in terms of helping the charity but also as a return on investment for their own businesses. Charitable giving with a positive return on investment? Now there’s a thought!”

Photo: From left: Richard Harrison (BCH ); Christine Mott (BCH); Yifan Liang (BCH); Helen Ord (BCH); Dean Attwell (Oakland International); Rachel Ollerenshaw (Molly Ollys); Helen Queen (BCH) and Sam Attwell (Molly Ollys Young Ambassador).


Every donation, whatever size, helps a seriously unwell child


Current data suggests that 12 children and young people are diagnosed with cancer every day, and that 1,900 children under the age of 14 in the UK are diagnosed each year.

More children are diagnosed with a range of other, often rare, conditions and illnesses that are also life-threatening.

Molly Ollys is committed to helping as many of these children and their families as possible, and works hard to raise the necessary funds to be able to help those who contact us.

You can help us do this by making a donation, joining in with our fundraising events, running your own events, using Give as You Live when you are shopping, and by leaving a legacy in your will. Please visit our How you can help page to find out more.