Purple Soup AwardPurple Soup, a not-for-profit group that brings adventure into the lives of children with chronic illnesses recently received a prestigious award at an international conference in the United States.
Purple Soup was recognised for creativity and excellence in programming at the 2013 North American Camping Conference of Hemophilia Organizations (NACCHO).
Director Tim Marchinton said he was thrilled that Purple Soup was recognised in such a competitive field - with applicants from across the globe vying for the awards.
'It's incredible to have been recognised as being among the best in the world at what we do,' Marchinton said. 'Hopefully this recognition will allow us to take Purple Soup's unique brand of adventure therapy to children all over the world.'
This year's award follows on from last year's conference, where Purple Soup received awards for both its camp's theme programming and also for its innovative child protection policy.
Marchinton established Purple Soup in 2002, having worked in adventure therapy at camps all over the world. He now runs programs all over Australia for children with conditions such as Cystic Fibrosis,
Haemophilia and Epilepsy. He also runs camps for families and siblings of these children - all of whom are affected by their family member's condition.
'The cutting-edge adventure therapy programs that Purple Soup offers are designed to focus on the psychosocial and emotional aspects of these conditions,' Marchinton said.
'While health professionals are often able to help with the medical aspects of these illnesses, it is the emotional aspects that can have a lasting impact on patients and their families as many young people with chronic illnesses feel socially isolated, uncertain about their future and fearful of not being able to achieve their life goals.
'Our programs use the therapeutic aspects of adventure to empower and enhance the quality of life of these young people.'
Purple Soup receives no government or philanthropic funding. Instead, Marchinton undertakes teambuilding activities for corporations all over Australia, channelling the profits from these directly into the adventure therapy programs.
'Our corporate clients see significant results in their staff - from improved productivity to better time management to improved communication and problem-solving skills,' he said. 'And the additional bonus is that not only do their staff gain valuable skills that will benefit them in the workplace, but they are also making a valuable contribution to the lives of children with chronic illnesses.'
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