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New specialist equipment for RUH NICU

Premature babies being cared for in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Bath’s Royal United Hospital are to benefit from a pioneering new piece of equipment thanks to fundraising by family and friends of a Westbury couple.

Tania, aged 40 and Andy Covington-Cross aged 42, sadly lost their daughter Mabel when she was born at just 22 weeks in December 2016.

Tania said: “Our precious daughter Mabel was perfect. The midwives, consultants and chaplaincy were amazing at what was the worst time of our lives, so my husband and I decided that we wanted to give something back to the RUH.

“We set up a Just Giving page to support the hospital’s charity, The Forever Friends Appeal when I was in the RUH so we could raise funds in Mabel’s memory for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. We’ve been amazed and moved by the generosity of our friends and family who have helped us raise over £10,000 which has helped fund the purchase of a video laryngoscope for the unit.”

Tania and Andy NICU equipment v2

Today, (Thursday 19 October) Tania and Andy were invited in by The Forever Friends Appeal to come to meet staff in NICU and see the piece of equipment that they generously funded. Dr Steve Jones, Consultant Neonatologist, at the RUH said:

“The video laryngoscope gives us better view via a projected image on a screen so that we can see a baby’s airway clearly when we need to put a breathing tube into their throat to help with their breathing.

“Having this equipment is a game changer for us and it has already been demonstrated to our neonatal colleagues in Trusts across the South West. We are extremely grateful to Tania, Andy and their family for funding this.”

Tania and her husband, who are expecting a baby this Christmas have now set up a Forever fund through The Forever Friends Appeal in memory of Mabel, to pay tribute and continue raising funds for the RUH. Tania said:

“We’d like to thank everyone who has donated. We are taking comfort that our darling daughter has been able to help others with her brief life, and that this equipment will also provide the additional support to the medical staff to enhance the great care and treatment they already give, thank you all so much.”

If anyone would like to make a donation to Tania and Andy, the link to their Just Giving page is here Alternatively, if you wish to donate in memory of your loved  please contact Jan Witt, In Memory & Legacy Officer, The Forever Friends Appeal on: 01225 825819 or email Jan.witt@nhs.net

 

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Newfoundland dog rescue day raises over £5,000

Over £5,500 has been raised for patients at Bath’s Royal United Hospital from a water-based fundraising challenge with a difference.

Twenty seven people braved the cold waters in Portishead Marina, Bristol to be rescued each by a Newfoundland dog, all part of the organised Newfoundland dog rescue day for The Forever Friends Appeal, the fundraising charity for Bath’s Royal United Hospital.

One of the youngest participants to take the plunge was eight year old Zara Sanders who raised £650. The eldest was Giles Wareham, aged 71. Giles, Landlord of The Biddestone Arms, Nr Chippenham said:

“I love our NHS and have had great care over the years. I am very grateful for the support from friends as I will end up generating over £1,000. I’d also like to thank Tsuki, the Newfoundland dog which managed to pull me out (much to the annoyance of my wife!).”

Staff from the RUH’s Cardiology ward and other departments also took part to raise funds and support the hospital’s Forever Friends Appeal.

dog dive 3

Emily Lynch, Events and Community Officer, The Forever Friends Appeal said:

“This was our first Newfoundland Water Rescue Day and it was a great success. We’re delighted with the amount raised and everyone who took part really enjoyed the experience. The dogs were amazing and they showed us just how fantastic they are at rescuing people in water – of course, this was done just for fun on the day.

“As the participants could choose where their sponsorship will go, we’ve got funds going towards our new builds such as the new Cancer Centre and Therapies Centre, as well as to wards and departments in the RUH, so thank you to everyone who has supported and donated. I’d like to also take this opportunity to thank David Pugh and everyone at Newfound Friends UK who brought the dogs along for the day and to Portishead Marina for hosting the event.”

As this year’s event was oversubscribed, The Forever Friends Appeal will host another Newfoundland dog rescue day next year (date tbc). Those interested in taking part should register their interest here

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MJ Church raises over £77,000 for RUH Cancer Centre

Chippenham-based contractor, MJ Church has become a Principal Corporate Partner of The Forever Friends Appeal in recognition of raising £77,169 for the RUH’s Cancer Care campaign.

Staff at MJ Church have been fundraising for the Appeal’s Cancer Care campaign since family member, friend and colleague, Mark Hucklebridge was diagnosed with cancer in 2010. He sadly passed away earlier this year.

Carol, Marketing Manager, MJ Church, said:

“We’ve all worked really hard to raise funds for the new Cancer centre as the cause is really close to our hearts, especially as we’ve sadly lost Mark who was full of courage and resistance to cancer, he was such inspiration to friends and colleagues at MJ Church. Mark’s last 6 years were spent fundraising and helping others.

“One of our most successful fundraising events was held in August when we hosted a charity race day at Bath Racecourse. In total £22,714 was raised by holding a raffle, auction and bucket collections around the course, doubling the amount from last year’s charity race day. We would like to thank everyone who came, donated and supported us including The Reuben Foundation for donating £2,000 towards the total.”

Staff from MJ Church holding cheque for £22,714 with Jan from The Forever Friends Appeal

As an Appeal Principle Corporate Partner, MJ Church will receive a specialist area named after them in the new Cancer Centre. Tim Hobbs, Head of Fundraising, The Forever Friends Appeal said:

“We are delighted to welcome MJ Church as a Principal Corporate Partner. Their commitment over the past 17 years has been incredible. So, on behalf of the Appeal, I personally would like to thank MJ Church for the significant contribution they’ve made to our Cancer campaign. This amount will go towards our pioneering new Cancer Centre which will provide a highly beneficial healing environment for patients like Mark who go through this difficult time in their lives.”

“The Appeal has currently raised £8.3 million for the new Cancer Centre and it is very much hoped that with the help of donors and companies like MJ Church, we will be able to generate over £9m towards the building. Anyone who would like to make a donation should visit our website: www.foreverfriendsappeal.co.uk.”

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Tribute fund raises over £10K for RUH Cancer Centre

A tribute fund, set up in the name of Lindsay Game has raised over £10,000 for Bath’s Royal United Hospitals (RUH) Cancer Care Campaign.

Lindsay Game from Chew Stoke was diagnosed with breast cancer twenty eight years ago. In 2015, the cancer returned and she was told it was untreatable. Whilst receiving treatment at the RUH, Lindsay became a supporter of the Forever Friends Appeal and decided to start fundraising to help towards the build of the new Cancer Treatment Centre.

Sadly in 2017, Lindsay lost her battle with cancer and passed away. Her husband Nigel wanted to continue raising funds for The Forever Friends Appeal and set up the Lindsay Game Forever Fund, in tribute to keeping her memory alive.

Nigel said:
“Lindsay received such good care from staff at the RUH’s Oncology, Breast Care Unit and Radiotherapy department and her family and friends wanted to continue to help make a difference to the patients living with cancer who are treated at Bath’s Royal United Hospital.

“Since Lindsay’s Forever Fund was set up, over £14,000 has been raised for the Cancer Care Campaign, which is absolutely brilliant. We want to continue raising more funds, so on Saturday 7 October we’re having a pink themed coffee morning at Chew Stoke Church Hall. It will be held from 10am to 12noon to celebrate Lindsay’s life, as the following week it would have been her 61st Birthday. Everyone who knew Lindsay is welcome to come along and should try to wear something pink to show their support.”

The pink themed coffee morning will begin with entertainment from Bath band, Jiggidy and at 11am a
representative from The Forever Friends Appeal will talk about the impact of the money raised through Lindsay’s Forever Fund, plus there will be performances by Mary Dowson’s Hall Singers.

Lindsay-Game-Pink-Coffee-Morning-poster2

Jan Witt, In Memory & Legacy Officer, The Forever Friends Appeal said:
“We are extremely grateful to Nigel for continuing with Lindsay’s legacy of fundraising by opening a Forever Fund in her name to continue her support of the Cancer Care Campaign.

Lindsay’s determination and passion to help future RUH patients receive the very best facilities throughout their treatment and care for cancer has been embraced by her family and friends as we have watched her fund grow and grow!

“We understand the impact that the loss of a loved one can have on families, friends and colleagues and for some, there is a need to have something to focus on which offers a meaningful remembrance, such as a Forever Fund.

“Anyone can set up a Forever Fund in the name of a loved one through The Forever Friends Appeal. It gives people the opportunity to come together, pay tribute and celebrate their life in a very personal and positive way, whilst also raising funds and supporting the work of The Forever Friends Appeal.”

For information about a Forever Fund Appeal, visit: www.foreverfriendsappeal.co.uk/tribute-funds

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Father’s £10k donation to RUH Critical Care in son’s memory

People needing critical care at the Bath Royal United Hospital are to benefit from the generosity and gratitude of the father of a former patient.

Adrian Hunter, who was 39 years old, spent eleven weeks in the Critical Care Unit earlier this year,having been found unconscious at his flat in central Bath in January. He had type 1 diabetes and while in hospital, the doctors discovered he had a rare bone marrow virus that proved, in conjunction with other complications, to be incurable.

Today, (Friday 29 Sept) on what would have been Adrian’s 40th birthday, his father Rik presented the unit with a cheque for £10,000 in thanks for his son’s great care and to honour his memory.

ITU Cheque presentation

Mr Hunter, a retired Royal Air Force officer from Wroughton, near Swindon, said: “Adrian was given unbelievable care and attention from a dedicated nursing team looking after him 24 hours a day. The doctors went to enormous lengths to try to find out was wrong with him. Everyone put in so much time and effort to try to save him and, as far as I could tell, no stone was left unturned. What the staff do in intensive and critical care is absolutely brilliant, I want to make this donation in memory of Adrian through the hospital’s charity, the Forever Friends Appeal, which will purchase specialist equipment for the unit to help support the amazing work they do.”

Gavin Hitchman, Critical Care and Outreach Matron, said:  “This is an extremely generous donation that will be used for the benefit of future patients we care for. Adrian was an amazingly brave and likable young man, one who staff recall as a pleasure to care for. His father too is a considerate, kind gentleman which I’m sure many people would agree with. We are deeply grateful for this gift in Adrian’s memory.”

Adrian Hunter was a former pupil at Ridgeway School in Wroughton and gained a degree in materials engineering at Loughborough University. When he fell ill he was working for Novia Financial plc and was dealing in a broad range of investment funds in Bath. He died at the Prospect Hospice in Wroughton on 30 March, with his father by his side. It was where he had asked to spend his final days, as it where his mother had passed away a few months earlier.

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