Shropshire Star

Pupils support heart charities – and fellow classmate

Youngsters at a county school turned red to raise money for a charities supporting children with heart defects – like one of their classmates had when she was only four months old.

The day raised more than £200.

Old Hall School in Wellington marked National Heart Week, an initiative very important to ten-year-old pupil Hattie and her family, with all pupils wearing something red and donating gold coins.

Hattie had open heart surgery at the Evelina Children’s Hospital when she was just a baby and the team there continue to look after her.

The children at Old Hall wanted to raise awareness of the British Heart Foundation’s support for research at the hospital and for Tiny Tickers – a national but smaller charity which carries out much-needed sonographic training for congenital heart conditions and fundraises for pulse oximeters to be placed in NHS Trusts throughout the country.

Carys, Hattie’s mum, said today they were delighted to be able to support the charities which had in turn helped save Hattie’s life, and thanked her school for taking part in the wear red day for National Heart Week.

It was in the same month as the tenth anniversary of Hattie's heart operation and her mum said she is now a wonderful bundle of energy who is living a full and active life and much of that was thanks to the fantastic team at the Evelina.

"It was lovely to see how excited Hattie was to mark this special anniversary for her with her friends at school," she added.

"We are eternally grateful for the dedication and expertise which helped to save her life and continues now to care for her and ensure that she stays well. The British Heart Foundation provides research grants to specialist centres like Evelina London and Tiny Tickers campaigns for better training and heart defect detection for babies in-utero.

“Unfortunately, Hattie’s heart condition wasn’t picked up before she was born, but with better training and advances in medical imaging and research, both Tiny Tickers and The BHF hope to make a difference for babies and their families."

Head at Old Hall School Anna Karacan said the children were so enthusiastic when it was suggested that they do something at school to mark National Heart Week.

She said: "We do a number of fundraising initiatives each year, but it was very obvious very quickly this was quite special to the children, particularly those in year five."

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