Amazing support from Persimmon

PRESS RELEASE
September 2021

Heart charity given transport boost

A Gloucester charity which supports children with heart conditions has been handed a donation to help with transport costs.

Heart Heroes provides services for young people with heart problems, helping them meet others who are in a similar situation and allowing families to talk to others going through related experiences.

The charity has received £1,000 from Persimmon Homes Severn Valley as part of the housebuilder’s long-running and successful Community Champion campaign.

Each and every month Persimmon donates up to £64,000 to good causes across the UK.

Heart Heroes will use its windfall to help pay for transport for meet ups and days out.

Kelly Cornish, charity founder, said: “We are over the moon with this generous donation from Persimmon Homes.

“Our events and socialising opportunities mean a lot to the children we support with heart diseases, and their families as well.

“We are desperately in need of transport for our families who don’t drive so that they can access our support, now more than ever after they have spent so long in isolation due to Covid-19.

“This £1,000 from Persimmon will make a huge difference.”

Carly Spear, sales director at Persimmon Homes Severn Valley, said: “We are delighted to be able to support Heart Heroes.

“It must be really tough when a child has a heart problem, but meeting with people in a similar position really helps.

“This donation will ensure more people will be able to attend these valued events.”

Persimmon Homes is currently building stunning new homes at Yew Tree Gardens in nearby Tuffley.

A range of two, three and four-bedroom homes are available, with prices starting from £221,495.

For more information visit www.persimmonhomes.com, or to apply for Community Champions funding visit www.persimmonhomes.com/charity.

 

Giving Post-Pandemic

According to research commissioned by the Covid-19 Support Fund earlier this year, about 2.2 million people who are regular givers to various charities intended to, or already had, cut back the amount they donate. Alongside this, lots of people shifted the focus of their donations, understandably, to help the numerous initiatives that arose as a result of the pandemic – charities up and down the country have seen falls in donations, and are struggling to provide the usual services: the CEO of New Routes said in an interview  “over the past few months we have definitely noticed a reduction in the number of ad-hoc donations compared to previous years, which can really add up for a small charity like ours”.

However, the work of charities cannot be allowed to stop, and their necessity is more prominent now than ever: in the case of Heart Heroes, a lot of the work done is about supporting families who have a child with a congenital heart disease through the difficult process involved in treating it and adjusting to a life that is imposed upon by serious challenges – this is done through individual counselling, care packages, support groups, and lots more. As you can imagine, over the course of the pandemic, ‘less-urgent’ healthcare has been pushed to the side, and families are of course struggling more than before in arranging all the convoluted appointments and medicines. Furthermore, the time spent at home only adds to this – it is very easy for families to feel all alone in their battle, and that they have nowhere to turn.

This is of course where Heart Heroes steps in, but this is only possible through sustained donations to our incredibly important cause. Support sessions enable families to connect and bond with those facing similar problems, and provide affected children the opportunity to play and interact with other people their age in the same situation, with the same limitations – it can be very frustrating for small children to not be able to take part in all the activities their peers do, so being able to participate fully in activities and make friends is hugely important. Thus, we plead that our supporters continue doing just that, and spread word about the fundraising events and worthy efforts that we make to take some of the strain off these families.

Alongside this, we appeal especially to businesses (particularly local to the South-West and South Wales, where we can make a distinct impact on local communities) to support us through means like choosing us as the benefactor of philanthropic corporate social responsibility. We welcome help like this in lots of ways, but the most obvious is selecting Heart Heroes as the charity at the focus of fundraising days – this could be a cake sale, a casual-dress day, absolutely anything. Every donation, big or small, pushes Heart Heroes to be able to help more families in more ways, and provide that vital place to turn.

If you have any questions about the logistics of this, or want to know how you or your business could help us in more detail, please email email@heartheroes.co.uk and we will more than happy to let you know.

 

Meet Heart Hero Matilda

Yesterday (Tuesday 5th) we were asked to support a mum whose 5 month old baby was having her second open heart surgery. Dad was at home with their 4 year old daughter back in Devon so was unable to be at her bedside.
This is the kind of support we’d like to offer ongoing as we totally understand how emotionally hard it is having a poorly child and especially on intensive care and not to have your partner with you is even harder. During the pandemic only one parent was allowed with each child but now two parents can be present, highlighting even more so when the support can’t be there.
As a charity it was helpful to see the journey from within the hospital from the parents view. Also to see the nurses, doctors and consultants working tirelessly to look after not just the children but the families, explaining every step. These fragile cardiac children are very resilient, super strong and amaze us everyday.
‘I’m so glad i got in contact with you, you made me feel so much better yesterday and coped so much better than i could have done on my own. I don’t feel alone anymore, I feel a part of a loving community that knows what I’m going through and doesn’t pitty me like others do with out realising’ words from mum.

Gift Aid Awareness Day

Get involved in Gift Aid Awareness Day

Since 2018, charities across the UK have been taking to social media for one day every October to share the #TickTheBox message with donors, supporters, volunteers and others.

What Is Gift Aid?

When you tick the Gift Aid box, charities receive an extra 25% on top of your donation, provided you’re a UK taxpayer. The best bit? It’s paid by the government, so it doesn’t cost you anything extra.

So, if you donate £10 and tick the Gift Aid box, the charity can claim and extra £2.50, boosting your donation at no cost to you.

How do I know if I’m a UK taxpayer?

For a charity to receive Gift Aid, you need to have paid at least the same amount of capital or income tax as the amount your charity would want to claim in Gift Aid. For example, if you wanted to boost a £10 donation through Gift Aid, you must have paid at least £2.50 in tax that year.

When shouldn’t I tick the Gift Aid box?

Gift Aid cannot be claimed on donations that are funds that have been raised by (for example) a bake sale. The money must be your own.

You also can’t make a donation on behalf of someone else. If you are given the donation by someone, and you use your own details (bank details etc) to submit it, it cannot be accepted, even if they are a UK taxpayer.

Is it worth it?

100% yes! We can’t tick the box for you, but when you do we’ll process everything and won’t charge the charity or fundraiser to receive the Gift Aid.

#TickTheBox #GiftAidAwarenessDay

Heart Family support

We’ve recently had a family reach out via our Facebook messenger who’s journey has been very long and traumatic. Leo was diagnosed with Kawasaki disease the number 1 cause of acquired heart disease. Leo sustained dramatic and life limiting damage to his heart, coronary artery disease, giant coronary aneurysms and thrombus in the same coronaries.

Leo failed Ecmo and Milranione and is now the longest paitent in Gosh on the mechanical aided berlin heart device it’s been 15 months so far. The family home is in Swansea, Wales. 

Leo also has a 10 year old sister who we have invited to join our Cool kids club.  

What is the Berlin Heart?

The Berlin heart is a type of “Ventricular Assist Device” or” VAD”. It is a simple air driven pump which takes over the work of one or both sides of the child’s own heart.

https://www.gosh.nhs.uk/conditions-and-treatments/procedures-and-treatments/berlin-heart-mechanical-heart-assist/

Learning to live beyond bereavement

Heart Heroes is in it’s 3rd year and as a charity we have noticed an increase in demand for support and more recently the bereavement side of the Cardiac World. This sadly is the stark reality of having a child with a complex heart condition. 

 

Forever Phoenix, named after 3 year old Phoenix who recently passed, is in the process of being launched to support families through grief. Sometimes this grief may not even be through the death of a heart child but grief of loss of identity or the grief for a child with a life limiting heart condition. Shock, trauma and the unknown can be hard to deal with whilst caring for a poorly child.

 

Forever Phoenix will initially be a support group for those that reach out and we would love to be able to offer the Grief recovery programme. Currently, sadly there is little support for families who have lost a child with a heart condition. We hope to work closely with the cardiac team and bereavement support at The Bristol Children’s Hospital which is where most of the children receive their medical care.

 

‘When you are suffering, on a daily basis, with the pain of a broken heart, there is one major question you need to ask yourself: Do I want to continue to suffer this pain for the rest of my life? Many people think this is the only option, and the fate they must endure forever. Many become accustomed to finding themselves in tears at odd moments throughout their days when they think of a love or relationship lost. Others believe that their loss has destroyed their happiness and sense of security, and now feel that they will be bitter and joyless forever. That is not the case. You have options that can move you out from under this cloud’. Grief Recovery Method Programme. https://www.griefrecoverymethod.com/evidence-based

How can you support?

Sign up to our Give Hope Campaign https://heartheroes.co.uk/givehope/ pledge a specific amount, fundraise for us or contact us to learn more.

Forever Phoenix

We at Heart Heroes really wish we didn’t have to support the bereavement side of the cardiac world but sadly some beautiful Heart Heroes like Phoenix will be forever 3. This is the stark reality of a child living with a complex heart condition. We thank Phoenix’s mum Clare, dad Damien and sister Faye,  for allowing us to continue to be part of your journey and the fact you want to support others who have lost is truly inspirational. Phoenix was truly one of a kind albeit non verbal he found ways to communicate and make everyone STOP and listen. Truly loved by his family and everyone that knew him.

Clare knows only too well the effects and struggles of having a child with a complex heart condition and now the unbearable loss. We will support the family anyway we can and think it’s truly inspirational that they want to support others.

We will be offering families the option to partake in the Grief recovery programme, read all about it here…

https://www.griefrecoverymethod.com/our-programs

When you are suffering, on a daily basis, with the pain of a broken heart, there is one major question you need to ask yourself: Do I want to continue to suffer this pain for the rest of my life? Many people think this is the only option, and the fate they must endure forever. Many become accustomed to finding themselves in tears at odd moments throughout their days when they think of a love or relationship lost. Others believe that their loss has destroyed their happiness and sense of security, and now feel that they will be bitter and joyless forever. That is not the case. You have options that can move you out from under this cloud.