An Eyemouth couple have praised the newly named Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity after it helped them cope when their two children received life-changing operations.
Karen Purvis, 36, and her husband Scott, 38, of Hallydown Crescent, experienced first-hand the work that staff at the charity carry out when both their daughter Isla and son Aaron were born without a section of skull as a result of Adams-Oliver Syndrome.
As well as going to regular check-ups and consultations with specialists, 13-year-old Isla attended Edinburgh’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children in 2011 when she underwent a cranioplasty and tissue expansion on her scalp. The success of the operation means that the Eyemouth High School pupil now has a full head of hair.
Eight-year-old Aaron, who attends Eyemouth Primary School, also underwent a similar operation to his sister however, due to a complication, the plastic plate that was inserted over his cranium had to be removed.
The praise comes as the Sick Kids Foundation, which has been running for 25 years, has changed its name to Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity to coincide with the renaming of Edinburgh’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children when it opens its new location.
By calling it the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People, bosses say the removal of the word sick should shift the focus away from why patients might be there and prevent the impact on a patient’s self-esteem.
Karen said: “The support they’ve given us throughout the kids’ treatment has been incredible. Some of what they do is so simple and straightforward but it’s so needed.
She added:“When our son was first taken into hospital we were able to stay by his bedside for one month because the charity fund camp beds for mothers to stay on the ward.
“PJ’s Loft, the parents’ accommodation provided free by the charity, has provided us with a place to stay in the past, which was incredibly helpful. We could stay close to our children and also have somewhere to sleep, eat and shower.
“They take care of your basic needs, which can easily be neglected when you’re busy worrying about your children.
“Just having somewhere to sit down can make all the difference.”
Roslyn Neely, CEO of Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity, said: “Through the amazing support and fundraising of many people, we’ve supported the work of the Edinburgh Children’s Hospital for 25 years. But with the hospital changing to a new name, we felt this would be a positive opportunity to also update our own name.
“Aside from our name, nothing will change in terms of the work that we do. We continue to be a grant giving organisation which exists to transform the experiences of children and young people in hospital so that they can be a child first and a patient second.
“The clinical work of the hospital is world class and often ground-breaking. However, we rely completely on the public for all our donations and we still need support to help us provide the magical extras to benefit the hundreds of thousands of babies, children and young people who will be patients over future decades.”
The couple are now hoping that the name change will help people come up with new fundraising ideas.