£500 raised for The Sheffield Children’s Hospital Charity

Here I am presenting the cheque for £500 to Caitlin from The Sheffield Children’s Hospital Charity

At the end of last year I released my 3rd annual Peak District Calendar and decided that this time I wanted to raise some money for charity, so a few months later and 250 calendar sales on I am proud and excited to announce that this morning I presented The Sheffield Children’s Hospital Charity with a cheque for £500!

Why I decided to raise money for TCHC through my Peak District Calendar.

In June 2016 I was lucky enough to welcome my beautiful daughter Robyn into the world, to date the proudest moment of my life and one I will never forget, unfortunately within 48 hours there were some concerns with a blood test and we discovered that she had an alarmingly low platelet count. Alarm bells rang in my head and it was all too familiar of a condition my wife Jess had suffered from several years earlier, we looked at each other and our hearts sunk a mile, all we wanted to do was to get our newly established little family home and enjoy being new parents.

We spent the next 10 days in hospital with Robyn, a good chunk of this time was spent in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit facility in Jessops Hospital where Robyn had the transfusions she needed to help boost her platelet count as well as being hooked up to machines to monitor her. Hands down it was one of the most daunting, scary and heartbreaking things to see as a parent; don’t get me wrong, there were babies in there too who had more serious conditions but we were still petrified. But with that aside the nurses and doctors in the unit were amazing and did so much to give us faith and raise our spirits and it’s being in an environment like that where you realise just how hard our NHS staff work to do the best for their patients.

Once Robyn had left Jessops we were passed over to The Sheffield Children’s Hospital and the level of care and devotion received was no different, there were many trips back and forth in order to monitor Robyn’s condition. This included some more transfusions while up on one of the ward’s, unfortunately being back at work meant that a lot of this was down to Jess. One experience I will never forget her telling me was walking onto the ward for Robyn to have a transfusion of platelets and just having one of those moments where you feel broken, perplexed, fed up – that time when you really need someone to wrap their arms around you and tell you everything is going to be okay! It must have been written right across her face in giant letters as one of the nurses on the ward took one look at her and did just that, she put her arms around her, took Robyn and offered compassion.

Here’s me and Robyn cheering England on against Wales in the 6 Nations

Robyn is all happy and healthy now

And now at nearly 8 months young Robyn is doing amazing, growing up fast and a strong little girl – oh and she has me wrapped right around her little finger!

The work that they continue to do at the hospital and the way in which all the staff behaves it enough to give people hope in the face of adversity and I am humbled to have been able to give something back to help that continue.

There are still a few calendars left and I will continue to donate £2 from each one sold if you’re still looking for one you can order them here.