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Thankful parents raise £4,000 for Sick Children's Trust

News   •   May 24, 2016 10:18 BST

Jamie Edwards didn't take his first breath until he was eight minutes old

The parents of a little boy who nearly died at just a day old have raised £4,000 for The Sick Children’s Trust to say thank you for the charity’s support.

Michelle and Gary Edwards, from Rayne, went through every parent’s worst nightmare when their baby boy didn’t take his first breath until his was eight minutes old. Jamie, who has just celebrated his first birthday, inhaled meconium during labour which caused his lungs to collapse. Over the next 24 hours, Jamie’s condition deteriorated significantly. While doctors at Broomfield Hospital managed to stabilise him, it was clear that Jamie needed urgent specialist attention and he was rushed to Addenbrooke’s Hospital.

Over the next two weeks, despite his bumpy start to life, Jamie’s condition began to improve and he was eventually discharged. During that time, Michelle and Gary were supported by The Sick Children’s Trust’s free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation, Acorn House, located just a few minutes’ walk from Jamie’s side. To say thank you for its support, Michelle and Gary have been fundraising for the charity by taking on a 20 mile obstacle run and hosting ‘Little Jamie’s Charity Auction’. Mum Michelle says:

“Our two weeks from hell would have been so much worse if The Sick Children’s Trust hadn’t been there to help us. The most important thing for us was to be there while Jamie fought for his life, and The Sick Children’s Trust made that possible.

“It was the most terrifying two weeks of our lives and the only reason we managed to get through it was because we could be at our son’s side as he battled on.

“The Sick Children’s Trust not only takes all the stress out of trying to find somewhere to stay near to your child, but it also provides a vital haven in a heart-breaking situation. I used to wake up at two in the morning with sweats having panic attacks. But Acorn House was great as we had a direct telephone line to the ward from our room so I could put my mind at rest, and we were just minutes from his bedside in case anything did happen.

“Acorn House was the most amazing gift anyone could have given us at that time. We wanted to say thank you for that and knew that by raising money for The Sick Children’s Trust would help, as it relies entirely on voluntary donations. The importance of the charity’s ‘Homes from Home’ cannot be underestimated – and we know how vital it is for families to have the practical and emotional support during these unimaginable times.”

The Sick Children’s Trust’s Acorn House supports families with seriously ill children at Addenbrooke’s Hospital with a private room, access to communal bathrooms, laundry facilities, a living room and kitchen. House Manager Sandra Peckham says:

“We are so delighted with the support from Michelle and Gary – what an incredible amount they’ve raised for The Sick Children’s Trust.

“When a child is seriously ill, it is a very stressful situation for parents and Acorn House eases that stress somewhat by giving families free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation.

“Acorn House is just a stone’s throw away from Addenbrooke’s Hospital. Without Acorn House, Michelle and Gary would have had to either travel over 80 miles a day to be with their baby or would have had to pay for a hotel, putting a huge amount of pressure of them. Acorn House alleviates some of that pressure and stress and enables families to be together during these times.”

To read more about Jaime’s story, please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/Michelle-Orpe

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