On a beautiful sunny Saturday in July, around 300 people joined staff from East Kent Hospitals Children’s Diabetes Team on a visit to Howletts animal park.

The Paula Carr Diabetes Trust funded approximately 200 tickets and an additional 100 tickets were purchased by families wanting to bring other family members. 

The day out appealed to a wide age-range of children and young people, from those who were very small, to those about to move to adult services.

Everyone who wanted to was invited to meet up at a central point at lunch-time to eat, chat and get to know one another. Lots of families did this and the area was filled with children laughing and running around. New friendships were made among children as they played on the play equipment and parents had an opportunity to speak with other parents. Teenagers chatted in the kiosk queues and under the shade of trees.

It was a very successful event, enjoyed by everyone. Many people thanked the team on the day, saying how much they had enjoyed themselves. They were very appreciative of the funding provided by The Paula Carr Diabetes Trust and the organisation and time given by the Children’s Diabetes Team to make it happen. 

These are a few of the e-mail messages received afterwards from parents.

“Just wanted to say a huge thank you to the team for organising the zoo trip.  We had the best time and it was so beneficial to meet others who are living through type 1”

“Thanks again”

“Thank u so much we all had a lovely day” 

“Just would like to thank you lovely ladies for a  lovely day out David really enjoyed himself.  Thank you”

“Thank you so much for organising a lovely and much needed day out to Howletts today”

“It was so lovely to see and meet so many people who just ‘get it’. We saw some faces we haven’t seen for a while and also bumped in to people I know but not well enough to know they also have children with T1”

“The kids had a lovely day and had an encounter with the Rhino and I with the Tigers!”

“You all do so much for us and it never goes unnoticed or greatly appreciated! THANK YOU!!”

A Howletts tiger