A mum and dad from Sheffield are taking on the Great North Run to raise money for The Sick Children’s Trust to thank the charity for supporting them with a place to stay while their daughter was in hospital.
Tom and Deb Merriman will complete the 13.1 mile distance to raise £1,500 to support the charity’s two ‘Homes from Home’ in Sheffield, Magnolia and Treetop Houses. Located just minutes from Sheffield Children’s Hospital the ‘Homes from Home’ gave them a place to stay while their ten day old daughter, Matilda, received treatment for bronchiolitis.
Matilda was suffering from cold like symptoms, but when she started to struggle to breathe her parents became concerned and took her to hospital. Shortly after she was admitted to the high dependency unit, put on breathing support and diagnosed with bronchiolitis.
Throughout Matilda’s time in hospital, her parents were never more then a stone’s throw away from her bedside as they were supported by The Sick Children’s Trusts ‘Homes from Home’ Magnolia and Treetop Houses. To thank the charity for its support, Tom and Deb are now raising money by taking part in the Great North Run. Tom said:
“It’s hard to put into words how important the ‘Homes from Home’ were but they made such a distressing situation just that little bit easier. Having a base to go back to where we could cook meals, have a shower and get a good night’s sleep was such a massive help.
“Our eldest daughter, Florence, was able to stay with us at Magnolia and Treetop Houses too. It was really important for us to stay together as a family as much as possible. We could split our time between the hospital and the ‘Homes from Home’ so we could see both our daughters.
“Matilda is doing brilliantly and thriving now. She’s goes to baby gym and is constantly climbing things. She’s very mischievous. Deb and I have both completed the Great North Run several times for various charities in the past and we’re both really looking forward to the event and helping The Sick Children’s Trust support even more families.”
By taking part in the Great North Run and raising funds to support The Sick Children’s Trust’s ‘Homes from Home’ across the North, supporters like Tom and Deb, will keep families just a stone’s throw away from their seriously ill child’s hospital bedside. Ann Wyatt, Magnolia and Treetop House Manger, said:
“When Tom and Deb arrived at our ‘Home from Home’ we were pleased that we could keep their whole family together while Matilda was in hospital.
“As a charity The Sick Children’s Trust relies entirely on the generous support of our fundraisers, like Tom and Deb, to keep our ‘Homes from Home’ running. We are incredibly grateful to them for taking on this challenge to help keep more families close to their seriously ill children.”
More information about Tom and Deb’s fundraising can be found on their just giving page https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/thomas-merriman