Stephen Downer

Stephen Downer Complimentary Therapy

Fundraising for Royal Free Charity
by 43 supporters
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Royal Free Charity

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RCN 1165672
We fund services, equipment & research to help our hospitals go further, faster


The charity offers massage therapy to enhance the trust’s care for its patients and support for its staff.

Known as “the treat” and not “the treatment”, massage is an addition, not an alternative, to medical care

Research has shown that massage can reduce stress and anxiety; it can help people cope better with the illnesses and uncertainties they face and shorten the amount of time a patient needs to be in hospital.

Whether working with inpatients, outpatients, carers or staff, therapists focus on looking after the whole person, rather than focusing on a patient with a condition.

In 1992, one therapist, Keith Hunt, pioneered the offer of massage to patients diagnosed with cancer at the Royal Free. From this he grew a department and was awarded a MBE for outstanding services to complementary therapy.

The department now serves patients in all disciplines and has a team of paid staff.

Nickie Williamson became the complementary therapies service’s lead in 2019. She co-ordinates a dedicated team which last year delivered more than 17,000 visits to patients on the wards.

Patients and staff find comfort and support in the touch offered and in the mental space created.

As a thank you to the trust’s staff for their remarkable commitment, stamina and hard work throughout the pandemic, the massage team established a short-term massage clinic dedicated to staff. More than 800 treatments were received by staff during the eight weeks we ran the clinic.

I have completed my first full ever marathon on the 3rd October and I am planning to do more runs in the next coming year. All this to help bring a smile to a patients and staff's faces, Will you help me?

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About the charity

Royal Free Charity

Verified by JustGiving

RCN 1165672
The Royal Free Charity supports staff and patients across the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust. From small acts of kindness to huge investments in research, everything we do changes lives for the better. We support our hospitals to go further, faster – delivering impact locally and globally.

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