The support given to a family whose baby daughter needed life-saving surgery has prompted a group of men from Weymouth to get together and organise a fundraiser.
Greg Black, steward of Wyke Regis Social Club, has organised a night of fundraising at the club to raise money for Ronald McDonald House, a charity which provides accommodation near hospitals for families with sick children.
Greg will be shaving his head and beard to raise money for this cause. He will be joined by his father Rod and brother Brendan shaving their beards, his other brother Freddy shaving his head and club members Alan Vowels cutting his hair and Colin Hogg shaving his massive beard.
In April 2017, Brendan and his wife Joanne were blessed with the birth of their second child, Opal, at Dorset County Hospital. Unfortunately there were complications and an emergency caesarean was needed. Opal had an undiagnosed diaphragmatic hernia, which meant she had a hole in her diaphragm and part of her bowel found its way into her chest cavity, crushing her lungs and heart.
The family then found out about the charity.
"With the birth of our first child Eli being straight forward is was such a surreal and confusing experience when Opal was born." he said. "We didn’t really have anytime to process any information and make any rational plans as we were rushed to Southampton in the middle of the night for Opal to have life saving surgery.
"It was a particularly difficult time for Joanne as she was recovering from an emergency caesarean and awful side affects from epidurals. Almost immediately after being able to see Opal in neonatal we were told about Ronald McDonald house and I was able to check in that day.
"Without Ronald McDonald House the cost of travel, alternative accommodation and food would have been a massive financial burden that we simply couldn’t afford.
"We have stayed in Ronald McDonald house on two separate occasions but there are some families who spend years needing the service so any money raised helps make their difficult situation that little bit easier so they can focus on their families well being."
This is why Greg has organised the fundraising night on Saturday, February 29. There will be a charity raffle with many great prizes donated by many local businesses and members of the club, also on the night will be a quiz and bingo.
Greg said: "This April, Opal will be three. For someone so young she has been through more than most people have in their adult life. Since she was born and since her first operation, she has had to go through more of them and has suffered, but she remains strong and brings so much sunshine into her parents lives the rest of the family as well. I hope by donating money to Ronald McDonald House we will be helping other families in a similar situation."
To donate to the fundraising, head to Just Giving and search for Gregory Black.ur paragraph here.
RONALD McDONALD FUNDRAISER 29/2/2020