Danbury dad prepares for London Marathon to thank charity
A local dad is pounding the pavements training for this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon to raise £9,000 for The Sick Children’s Trust. He has already pledged £4,000 to the charity.
David Plane, 37, from Danbury in Essex, is on a mission to thank The Sick Children’s Trust for providing his family with free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation when his son, Broderick, spent 30 days fighting for his life in a hospital miles away from home.
The father-of-one, was supported by The Sick Children’s Trust following Broderick’s traumatic birth. Brody, as he is known, was not breathing when he was born as a result of inhaling meconium during labour. He required a month of specialist lifesaving treatment at The Royal London Children’s Hospital.
While Brody battled for survival, The Sick Children’s Trust gave David and his wife, Lesa Bennett, free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation at Stevenson House so that they could stay moments away from his bedside. Despite being prepared for the worst, Brody made a miraculously recovery and nearly four years on he is thriving and loving life.
Since receiving vital support from the charity, David and Lesa have been committed to raising funds and awareness for The Sick Children’s Trust.
David said: “As I’m training for the London Marathon, the memories of Brody’s birth come flooding back. It was an awful time, especially during those first two weeks as we really feared the worst for our son. During all the heartache and uncertainty, we were offered a place to stay at Stevenson House, which was located just a few minutes’ walk from Brody’s hospital bedside.
“Stevenson House meant we could be with Brody at any time. We could read him bedtime stories, visit him at all hours and take every step with him. If it wasn’t for Stevenson House, we would’ve felt like were abandoning our son when we had to travel back home every day. It was invaluable as we were able to give Brody all the attention we could and bond with our baby.
“Brody is doing really well now and you wouldn’t believe how ill he was when he was born. He’s even helping me with my training! As the years have passed, I think I’ve blocked out that time as it was so hard, however neither me nor Lesa ever want to forget the support The Sick Children’s Trust gave us. We want to help in whatever way we can to raise money to help other families who find themselves in a similar situation to us and also increase awareness of the charity’s work and what it does to support families with sick children.”
The Sick Children’s Trust relies entirely on voluntary donations to run its ten ‘Homes from Home’ across the country. It costs £30 to support a family for one night in ‘Home from Home’ accommodation and the charity supports around 4,000 families every year. David hopes to complete the London Marathon in 3hrs 45minutes and raise a further £5,000. He continued:
“There have been lots of ups and downs in my training. I’ve had injuries and setbacks, but I’m determined to soldier on. There was a time that I was terrified that I wouldn’t be able to take my son home and that reminds me that, whether I’m injured, unwell or busy with work, I can do this. I will do it for my family, friends and the charity that helped Lesa and me.”
David will join 12 other runners as part of #TeamSCT to raise vital funds to provide families with seriously ill children in hospital free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation.
Frances Saddington, Events Manager for The Sick Children’s Trust, says: “David’s dedication and determination never ceases to amaze us all at The Sick Children’s Trust. He is someone who puts his all into everything he does and we know he is going to do a fantastic job at running the London Marathon.
“The £4,000 that David has already donated has funded 133 nights of accommodation across our ‘Homes from Home’, alleviating just some of the stresses that comes with having a seriously ill child in hospital. We can’t thank David enough for that and wish him the best of luck for the race!”
Every year we help almost 3,800 families by giving them somewhere to stay near their seriously ill child’s hospital bedside. Sign up to receive our email newsletters to stay up to date with how your support is helping to keep families together.