A ‘LIFELINE’ for parents of brave youngsters battling heart conditions has launched as the first group of its kind in Sheffield.
Families receive vital information and support at the new group, run by children’s heart charity Patches.
It also offers parents a chance to meet others who understand the emotions that follow the diagnosis of heart problems in a child.
Mum Amy Brocklebank, of Stannington, was at the first meeting with her two-year-old son Louis, who was born with a hole in his heart, an irregular heartbeat and narrowing of the aorta.
The 25-year-old said: “Even though my friends are understanding, they just can’t know how it feels.
“All of the people here, as soon as I met them, you have an instant connection because they have had that feeling where you’ve dropped your child off in an operating theatre and had to walk away.”
The group will meet twice a month and also offer youngsters, as well as their brothers or sisters, the chance to take part in fun activities.
Mum Emma Turner saw her baby daughter Lacie-Mia undergo open heart surgery at just four days old, because her arteries were the wrong way around.
Emma, of Be ck Road, Shiregreen, said: “I wish there had been a group like this around when Lacie-Mia was born - we hope it will be a lifeline.
The group meets at Shiregreen Community Centre, Sicey Avenue. For details, call 07960 868803.