Parents grateful of charity support after daughter, 3, suffers brain haemorrhage

AS a result of their own experience, a Stevenage family is keen to raise awareness of the support available from The Sick Children s Trust to families whose children are receiving hospital treatment for serious illness. GRACE Allen was just three years o

AS a result of their own experience, a Stevenage family is keen to raise awareness of the support available from The Sick Children's Trust to families whose children are receiving hospital treatment for serious illness.

GRACE Allen was just three years old when she suddenly suffered a brain haemorrhage.

Her mother Sophie, 34, and father Gary, 43, of Miller Way in Stevenage, said their lives were thrown into turmoil. "We had no idea how we were going to cope," said Mrs Allen.

Grace, who has cerebral palsy, was admitted to Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge in October last year and her parents were able to stay for eight weeks at Acorn House - The Sick Children's Trust's home from home at the hospital, which opened in 2000.

"It helped us tremendously as we live at least a 40-minute drive away, so knowing we were close by at all times was a huge weight off our minds.

"Our other daughter, Rose, who was one, could visit or stay in a comfortable setting along with other family members.

Most Read

"Little things like having a place to cook meant we would bring Grace over to the house and cook her favourite meals. We enjoyed being able to have family meals together."

Grace, who is unable to walk or talk, had her fear of doctors and nurses greatly reduced by her family being close by.

Mrs Allen also described meeting other families at Acorn House who were going through similar experiences as "a godsend".

"It is so helpful to be able to share experiences, and very quickly you begin to realise you're not alone," she explained.

"We are so grateful to The Sick Children's Trust for giving us the opportunity to stay at Acorn House.

"Having a private space away from the hospital, to get a chance to rest, recharge your batteries, but know you are always close at hand is invaluable.

"Grace is getting better by the day, but it will still be a long road to recovery, and she may need future hospital treatment. For today she is well, which is enough for us."

For more information about The Sick Children's Trust, that specialises in providing home from home accommodation to families with children in hospital with serious illness, visit www.sickchildrenstrust.org

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter