Who are the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund?

Hello all,

Today’s blog is looking at the fabulous work the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund do.

For those of you who don’t know the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund are based in Leeds in the UK. They were set up 1988 by Duncan Walker and Dr Waterson. The charity was set up with the motto every child a childhood. The charity’s aim was to support hospitals and their patients to live a long and happy life. This remains their goal today.

Over the past 30 years they have managed to adapt and make the necessary changes which have enabled them support the patients and families which use the services at the Leeds General Infirmary.

The charity used to be based at Killingbeck Hospital which was a hospital dedicated to treating heart patients. In 1997 the hospital closed and the services were relocated to the LGI. This meant the charity had to relocate.

Why am I telling you about all this?

In August I turn 30. On the 21st of August 1991 I had open heart surgery. I was born with two holes in my heart and an interrupted aortic arch. I had open heart surgery at a week old.

I wanted to do something to mark the occasion, so I set myself a goal of raising £3000 in a year for this amazing charity and The British Heart Foundation.

Read how here.

Since the beginning of the pandemic every charity has found it difficult to keep going. The BHF have had to cut their research funding by half. The Children’s Heart Surgery Fund have had to relocate their office to one which cost less to rent. These are just two of the things which have been effected by the pandemic.

I have chatted to Lisa Community Fundraising Manager who works at the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund and Sarah, Family Support Worker they are both absolutely lovely.

A red heart with stitching up the middle holding it together. There is a needle and thread sat underneath.

A heart stitched back together.

How Children’s Heart Surgery Fund make a difference;

Over the past 32 years CHSF have spent more than seven million pounds supporting the Leeds Congenital Heart Unit, the 17,000+ babies, children and adults from Yorkshire, the Humber and North Lincolnshire treated each year and their families.

Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) is a heart condition or defect that develops in the womb before a baby is born.  CHD is one of the most common types of birth defects, affecting up to 8 in every 1000 babies born in the UK. While for the majority of babies their conditions are minor, some are more serious, and they do not survive.  However, thanks to advances in early diagnosis and treatment, around 8 out of 10 babies will grow up to become adults.

CHSF vision is to support hearts for life.  Their mission is to support the Leeds Congenital Heart Unit to remain a centre of excellence by providing funding and resources needed to care for a patient’s heart, mind, family and future.

CHSF know that caring for people with CHD involves more than treating just the heart itself.  They are there for;

Care for the heart

Providing revolutionary medical equipment

Care for the mind

Creating a positive and restful environment on the wards and funding play distraction equipment

Care for the family

Contributing towards living/travel expenses, offering parental accommodation and exceptional grants.

Care for the future

Funding research, clinical posts and projects.

Thankfully I am still here and approaching my 30th Birthday. I want you to know how amazing this charity is, how amazing the people who had a hand in saving my life are.

Thank you will never be enough. Please share my story and that of the charity and help me to raise £3000. Thank you.

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