The parents of a severely premature baby joined hundreds of others to take part in a sponsored walk to raise money for a specialist maternity hospital where their son is receiving life-saving treatment.
Aimee and Chris Davis took part in the Jessops Buggy Push in aid of the Jessop Wing Maternity Hospital, where they have spent the last two months with their baby boy Jaxon.
The third annual event, held at Rother Valley Country Park on Sunday, May 22, saw nearly 500 participants complete a 5km walk to raise more than £20, 000.
The money is set to be used to go towards the refurbishment of four family flats at the hospital that can be used by relatives of babies receiving treatment.
The couple decided to take part as they have seen first-hand how important facilities are at the unit.
Aimee went into labour at just 24 weeks with severe complications and was transferred from her local hospital in Leicestershire to the Jessop Wing in Sheffield.
Being over 60 miles from home and with their son in such a critical condition, Aimee and Chris have been staying in the parent accommodation reserved on the ward for those with seriously ill babies.
Aimee said: “I can’t tell you how much it has meant to us to be able to stay in the parent rooms. Before we arrived and were told that the rooms were available, we panicked thinking we were going to have to dip into our savings we’d just put down on a new house to pay for a hotel. There’s no way we could have afforded that for how long Jaxon has been in here.
“This whole situation is something you don’t even consider until you’re in it. For someone to have said to me after I gave birth, ‘right Jaxon’s staying here and you’ve got to go back to Leicestershire’, would have been absolute hell.”
She added: “We’ve got two other children who are 10 and 12 who we’ve had to leave at home. It’s been horrible, absolutely horrible not being able to have them here. It affects the whole family more than you realise. When my daughter comes to visit she bursts out crying because she doesn’t want to leave me.
“The parent accommodation is priceless. You can’t put a price on how valuable it is to be able to be here with him. To be able to walk in at two in the morning just to look at him because you can’t sleep.
“Being able to do the little things for him really helps me, being able to cuddle him and do kangaroo care with him. If you’re only here for a limited amount of time each day, around all the treatment and checks the babies receive, you might not get a chance to do those things.
“Being able to stay here means I can spend all my time with Jaxon instead of travelling to and from the hospital. The Jessops Buggy Push is a fantastic way to raise the money needed for projects like the flats. It’s a fun day out with people who have all experienced the fantastic work the Jessop Wing does. Having the flats, so that the whole family can stay, would make such a huge difference.”
Over the last three years the Jessops Buggy Push has raised £57, 000 for various hospital causes.