BBS Family Conference & AGM 2023
We are excited to share the highlights of our recent Annual Conference and AGM. Amongst the key news items at Conference, the Trustees unveiled the winner of our first Gareth Cumming Adventure Memorial award. Martha Harris to help complete a tennis scholarship in the USA. BBS Secretary Angie Stewart delivered a very moving tribute to Gareth and BBS were able to run a marvellous film tribute in honour of Gareth.
The one day Conference covered the latest advancements in OI research, treatment, and care. We enjoyed presentations from individuals from the OI Community and from NHS healthcare professionals and industry experts who graced our stage with their knowledge and passion, providing valuable insights into the condition and its management.
The highlight of conference was our fabulous Gala Dinner and Awards hosted by Vice Chairman John Phillips. It was a night of recognition and reward, where we celebrated the remarkable individuals who have made a significant impact in the OI community. You can see the winners here
It is always a challenge to find a venue which has large enough meeting room space, accessible bedrooms and at an affordable price. This year was no exception and with the cost of living crisis we decided on a one day event to make it more affordable for individuals to be able to attend, with the option of accommodation for those who wished to stay. The feedback received was positive and individuals felt this allowed more time and flexibility for socialising.
We started the morning sessions with talks on Pain in and OI and Therapeutic management of OI as well as Quality of Life around new treatments. We continued after the break with hearing updates on the Impact Survey, the Care Pathways Project and about the exciting RDCN – Rare Bone Collaborative Network to be launched in central London in Nov 2023. We also heard a presentation on about Top Tips and lived experiences from Trustee’s Thines Ganeshamoorthy and Dom Hyams, and also a powerful talk from the wonderful Sam Renke.
The talks through the morning session were streamed on Facebook live and can now be viewed here.
We also bought in the services of Narration whom we worked with previously in Ireland, who provided Digital Interaction both during Conference and in the Cool Bones Session. for 10 to 16 years olds. This proved to be incredibly popular allowing for lots of feedback, comments and questions.
Cool Bones and Kids Club
Cool Bones kids were kept entertained with Graffiti Art, where they designed an incredible BBS Mural, had a chance to hear and chat with Sam Renke, play with gaming stations and also had an interactive digital session with Occupational Health Therapists. The younger children were kept entertained by Tinies Creche service.
The formal business of the AGM comprised of:
1. the presentation of the Annual Report and Accounts of the Society for the year ended 31 March 2023 – these were approved and are now published here.
2. a resolution formally to elect a Trustee; Trustee Dom Hyams was confirmed.
3. The auditors; Bird Simpson were re-appointed for 2024.
CEO Patricia Osborne gave a brief summary of key highlights achieved at the Charity throughout the year and of details can be found in our Annual Review, with a reminder of the marvellous funding grant from Motability, making accessing wheelchairs a much faster process.
The Glitz and Glam of the Gala Dinner is always a highlight of the weekend and this year was no exception. We took time out to note the achievement of Steve Edney who recently received a kings award (BEM) British Empire Medal. The audience were dazzled by the amazing voices of Ruky Star and his sister 4Faith who entertained us after dinner. And our thanks to all the fabulous businesses who kindly donated gifts for our table top prize draw. Of course there was some serious moves on the dancefloor to close off what was a truly marvellous one day conference.
Our 2023 BBS recognition Award Winners were:
- Research Grants – Dr Meena Balasubramanian and Dr Argerie Tsimicalisri
- Group Fundraising Award – Staff at Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital
- Children’s Ambassador Award – Eleanor Organ and Lucy MacConnell
- OI CAN Award – The OI CAN Team
- Advocacy Award – Shani Dhanda
- Gareth Cumming Adventure Memorial Award – Martha Harris
- Special Recognition – Steve Edney BEM
See gallery below of photos from the conference.
We extend our deepest gratitude to all our attendees, speakers, sponsors, and staff who made this event an astounding success. Your support and dedication continue to be the driving force behind the BBS.
Watch the videos below to see what we got up to at this year’s conference!