The conference team at Marketing Sheffield recently celebrated 15 years of the Sheffield Conference Ambassador Programme with a gathering of ambassadors at one of the city’s iconic venues, The Forum. The celebration of this milestone happily coincided with the announcement of final funding for global first National Centre for Child Health Technology, a vision brought to life by one of the programme’s early Conference Ambassadors Professor Paul Dimitri Professor of Child Health and Director of Research and Innovation at Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, and a world-renowned expert in child health.
Sheffield’s Conference Ambassador Programme is one of the longest running in the UK and has underpinned the long-term success of the city’s conference calendar. Since the pandemic, ambassadors have secured conferences worth £4.6 million to the local economy. This includes some exciting events for 2023-5 such as the International Stillbirth Alliance, the British Association of Paediatric Surgeons, NDE In Nuclear Conference, the International Society for Study of Celiac Disease and the British Society for Paediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes (BSPED)
Emma France at Marketing Sheffield said, “I don’t think we ever imagined that 15 years later- and after the struggles of the pandemic- the Conference Ambassador Programme would still be so successful. We are fortunate to have a network of ambassadors with endless enthusiasm for telling the world where Sheffield leads the way. They are also helping us launch a new drive this year to find the next generation of ambassadors in the city- we need to find the new movers and shakers who will be the experts of the future so we can grow the programme even more.”
The anniversary coincided with the announcement of the final £6m funding for the new National Centre for Child Health Technology (NCCHT) at Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park, a global first centre which will develop the world’s most advanced and integrated healthcare system for children and young people.
Plans for the NCCHT include workshops and clinical spaces, with work focusing on developing technologies to address key national strategic priorities in child health including prevention and health inequalities, children's mental health, obesity, long term conditions, children's cancer, and children's disability.
Comprising 42,000 sq ft of floor space the Centre will incorporate the Creativity and Manufacturing Zone to develop the most advanced child health technologies in the world, the Advanced Rehabilitation Centre, a centre for immersive technologies and robotics, a healthy living and prevention centre, a state-of-the-art test bed facility for rapid technology assessment in real-word settings, an advanced telecommunications centre and facilities for business growth, development and knowledge transfer.
The Centre will accelerate the research, development and evaluation of child health technologies and will join an impressive portfolio of health and wellbeing research facilities at Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park, including two Sheffield Hallam University venues - the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre and the National Centre of Excellence for Food Engineering, alongside the Park Community Arena, developed by Canon Medical Systems.
Prof Paul Dimitri, Professor of Child Health and Director of Research and Innovation at Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“The development of the National Centre for Child Health Technology has been cited by industry partners as a global first. It is set to develop the most advanced therapies in the world through digital and technology development for children and young people.
We are also looking forward to our 3rd Child Health Technology Conference in November – a home grown event which we developed with Marketing Sheffield pre pandemic- uniting colleagues around the world who share the common goal of developing the world’s most advanced healthcare for children and young people through digital and technology development.”