On January 11th 2009 (almost 5 years to the day) our beautiful son Sebastian John Hollingsworth came into the world; the most perfect little present we could have hoped for. 16 hours after he was born, we discovered all was not well and he had a congenital heart defect called Tetralogy of Fallot. We were told without lifesaving surgery he wouldn’t reach his 2nd birthday and with those words our world fell apart. Mr Asif Hasan mended Seb’s heart and the care we received from the entire team, meant we would spend the rest of our lives trying to repay every single one of them.
In September of the same year we started on that path and raised our first few pounds for CHUF (Children’s Heart Unit Fund at the Freeman Hospital). After year one, we purchased much needed equipment for the Unit with the first £33,000 raised. This left us with the question of what next. With our fundraising going more successfully than we could ever have imagined; we needed a target that would both stretch us and create a lasting legacy for all the hard work of our friends and supporters. The target became to rebuild the playroom attached to Ward 23 and develop the outside play area; the small matter of £300,000!!!
4 years and 4 months after we raised our first few pounds for CHUF we have hit this huge target! It feels slightly surreal to be able to announce that our fundraising total now stands at £333,004…that’s a third of a million pounds!
Words fail me; how can I articulate what this means? I have no idea how to thank every individual who has contributed to this success; if I did it would be a very long list! Whether you have run, swam, cycled, baked, sold raffle tickets, attended one of our charity balls, driven a support car or donated some £££’s, you have the right to feel incredibly proud of yourself. Not just proud of helping us raise a serious amount of cash for CHUF, but also for helping to transform the lives of more children than you can possibly imagine.
At some point in the next few years Seb will undergo further open heart surgery. He is unlikely to understand what this will involve or why he is so poorly; all he will want to do is play with his friends. The rebuilding of the playroom and outside play area will bring a smile to Seb’s face and so many other little boys and girls just like him.
So as parents who will directly benefit from this, we want to say a huge thank you for supporting us over the last 4 years and helping to put a smile on so many poorly children’s lives.
Unfortunately this doesn’t mean we are putting our feet up; not just yet anyway!
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