Fri | Sep 22, 2017

Valentine's movement launches today for kids with heart defects

Published:Tuesday | February 14, 2017 | 2:00 AMJanelle Oswald
Thirteen-year-old King-Elyon Britton.
King-Elyon on the day he was born.
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Jamaicans looking for the perfect gift that won't fade away or lose its value once the newness wears off, can download Gospel track Better Days at www.elyonsheartfoundation.org.uk, and be part of a fundraising movement aimed at helping children born with heart defects.

With donations going to the Bustamante Hospital for Children, the uplifting Gospel track is inspired by British-Jamaican mother Sherrell Hutchinson's lifelong commitment to help her son, King-Elyon Britton, known as 'Britain's Bravest Boy', who was born in 2003 with congenital heart disease.

Hutchinson has since embarked on a relentless campaign to also assist families like hers.

Appealing to people around the world, Hutchinson and her 13-year-old son are embarking on a month-long fundraiser, starting today - Valentine's Day - and running until March 14. The campaign is aimed at creating awareness around babies born with heart defects, and raising funds to purchase equipment to help such families.

Promoting their campaign 'GIVE A POUND, GIVE A HEART', the inexpensive exchange of PS1/J$160, grants the 'caregiver' Better Days, which in return raises funds for medical equipment for mothers and babies born with heart disease. The equipment will be donated to the Bustamante Hospital for Children in Jamaica and to The Royal Brompton Hospital in the United Kingdom.

 

... A Godsend for mothers

 

"I am a mother of a child with a heart condition and I know these machines will be a tremendous help for everyone - mother, child and doctor. The machines are a Godsend," says Sherrell Hutchinson, mother of King-Elyon Britton.

She was commenting on the electronic medical machines to be acquired and donated to the Bustamante Hospital for Children with funds collected through the download of Gospel track Better Days, released by charity Elyon's Heart Foundation at www.elyonsheartfoundation.org.uk.

"They are electronic devices that send updated reports to the specialist consultant in the hospital, allowing the unborn child to be monitored and giving you, the mother, a sense of daily hope."

She added: "If I had one of these machines when I was pregnant I would have had greater peace of mind knowing my son was closely monitored and safe. Instead, I travelled weekly to the hospital for scans, which was terrifying."

Continuing, Hutchinson, whose family is from Sheffield, Negril, added: "When you are told at 20 weeks there is a chance your baby will not survive, it is just horrific. Every time you don't feel your baby move you think the worst. I was worried throughout the whole of my pregnancy. There were times I would wake up in the morning and King wouldn't move. My heart would race with anxiety, stress and worry, which always caused me to cry out to God, fearing this was the morning King may have been taken from me by his angel. I would gently rub my tummy but there would be no response; then I would tap my tummy and get a kick or punch back."

Explaining her motivation to donate to Jamaica, Hutchinson said: "I want to help mothers in Jamaica going through the same experience as I did. No mother should have to go through what I did. When I think about some of the mind-blowing challenges I went through, I shiver just trying to get my head around it. I can only imagine what mothers are going through in Jamaica. Elyon's Heart Foundation aims to ease this pain."

If you would like to get involved, support or register, contact EHFatvolunteer@elyonsheartfoundation.org.uk or info@elyonsheartfoundation.org.uk. Facebook and Instagram: elyonsheartfoundation. Twitter EHF14