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About Us

Kids Like Us started in 1992 when a group of staff from the Birmingham Children's Hospital organised a fun day with sponsored walk to raise money to take some of their patients away for a weekend of independence. The fun day also gave families a chance to meet, have fun and chat, this showed that peer support is invaluable and we still organise events with this in mind.

 A group quickly formed to help raise funds for future trips now known as 'independence breaks' or 'break aways' and these still happen annually, over 30 years later.

In 1998 we become a registered charity. Our aim is to raise funds to help those living with JIA, as well as awareness so that young people are diagnosed quickly and families find help and support as soon as possible. Our committee is now includes parents of JIA youngsters, JIA young adults and others committed to supporting youngsters living with the challenges of JIA and their families. 

You can find out more about our members and policies below.


Meet our Committee Members

Kirsty Turner
Chair, Trustee, Parent, Community Outreach and Committee Member

Kirsty's daughter was diagnosed with JIA at 20 months and was put in touch with KLU. Kirsty joined the committee several years later and is committed to providing support to families like her own living with JIA.

Marion Scott

Treasurer, Trustee, Community Outreach and Committee Member

Marion is now an executive coach, following 25 years in Business, working in finance, and project management.  As our newest committee member Marion has joined as she is passionate about making a difference to the lives of all the children whom the charity can reach. 

Moira Green

Secretary, Trustee, Parent, Community Outreach and Committee Member

Moira joined KLU after her daughter Louise was diagnosed with JIA aged 8 in 2000. She is part of the team that organises and helps at our outreach events.

Louise Green

Outreach Lead, Trustee, Community Outreach and Committee Member

Louise was diagnosed with JIA at age of 8.  KLU has always been part of her life and since joining the committee, meeting and helping new children & families living with the disease has been her favourite thing.

Gemma Turner

Social Media Lead, Community Outreach and Committee Member

Gemma was diagnosed with JIA at 19 months old and has been involved with the charity ever since. She is an Occupational Therapist and now looks after our Social Media pages and enjoys meeting and helping families at outreach events.

Founding Members

Irene Bannister

Irene has suffered from Rheumatoid Arthritis for over 30 years. Retired Deputy Head of King Edward VIIth High School for Girls in Birmingham, completing over 40 years in the teaching profession.

Tauny Southwood

Tauny is Emeritus Professor of Paediatric Rheumatology, with 35 years experience across the UK, Australia and US.  A strong devotee to physical fitness and is an active endurance cyclist and long distance triathlete.

Hear from our Parents and Young People

We've had the pleasure of talking with some of our parents and young people, enabling them to share their own stories and experiences.

Kids Like Us Outreach Events - Testimonials 

‘Kids Like Us are so important to the JIA community in the West Midlands. Being able to attend events organised by Kids Like Us has offered us opportunities to be with other families who ‘get it’, without us having to explain the challenges we are facing. And being around other children with JIA has given our son the opportunity to feel ‘normal’, which has been particularly important during flares when he has missed out on so many of the usual social and school activities. Having regular events has meant we have got to know some of the other families and it feels there is a little community for us that provides some stability and predictability on what can otherwise be an extremely isolating and unpredictable journey. The volunteers are amazing and provide a hugely important source of support. It was such a relief when we started to connect with the charity and we are very grateful for all their hard work.’


‘As a family we have thoroughly enjoyed the outreach events that Kids Like Us have organised for our JIA warriors and families. It’s great to meet with other families who have children with the same condition. It sometimes feels like you’re on your own but having these events is such a huge support. The team are amazing and so thoughtful about what activities and events would be suitable. I know the children thoroughly enjoy the events and can have fun regardless of their JIA.’


‘We found the charity Kids Like Us through BWCH when our daughter was first diagnosed with JIA. We attend much needed events and met other parents who are in the same situation as we are. It's nice to know what we go through we are not alone. Our children get to be with other children with arthritis who understand how they feel as our child is the only one in a high school with this condition, so it's a life line for her. I'd be lost without the support we get from Kids Like Us.’

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