A FAMILY-run charity dedicated to funding diabetes management training for midwives and other medics has closed after achieving its aim.

Thirsk-based group the Midwifery and Diabetes Educational Trust was launched by Keith and Jenny Carley, their daughter, Mandy, and son-in-law, Andrew Cook in1999, after Mrs Cook became seriously ill after giving birth to her third child, Claire, at the Friarage Hospital, in Northallerton.

Mrs Cook, a mentor at Queen Ethelburga’s School, near Boroughbridge, who had become diabetic aged eight, recovered and her parents and husband founded the charity to highlight best practise in treating diabetic mothers.

Loading article content

Following the death of Claire in 2000, aged 20 months, following a heart transplant with unforeseen complications, the family saw the charity's continuing work as a memorial to her short life.

Former Topcliffe GP surgery nurse Mrs Carley said the community had helped the charity raise £50,000 through fundraising events, including an annual sponsored walk, which had funded a wide range of activities to help improve practice and raise awareness, including training courses for staff and providing speakers for conferences.

Funds raised have also been used to develop an interactive digital guide on diabetes in pregnancy with Friarage Hospital consultant diabetologist Dr Roger Fisken.

The guide is being used to help more than 35,000 women a year in Britain, and in other countries including India, who have pregnancies complicated by diabetes, which increases the risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, premature birth and infant death.

Mrs Carley said the charity had not received any funding requests for two years due to the success of the interactive guide and advances in the training of nurses.

She said the family had concluded the trust’s mission had been fulfilled and should dissolve.

She said: “The fact the trust is no longer needed is a wonderful legacy for Mandy and Claire.”

She said the trust had awarded its remaining £8,300 to pregnancy and baby charity Tommy’s for work on diabetes in pregnancy.

Tommy’s will use half of the trust's donation to create a free information guide for women who are diagnosed with gestational diabetes, a type of diabetes that only occurs in pregnancy.

The remaining funds will be used to create a guide for women with existing diabetes to explain the importance of controlling diet and blood glucose levels prior to and during pregnancy.