PROSPER MAGAZINE: DIGITAL EDITION
THIS CHRISTMAS HELP ACORNS SHINE OVER LOCAL CHILDREN LIKE AIMEE
A charity dedicated to helping families with life limited children make magical memories to treasure forever is calling for the public’s help to make this Christmas a special one.
The future can seem very uncertain for many families that use Acorns Children’s Hospice, which is why the charity is asking people to give a gift this Christmas by helping to fund the shining stars who provide its lifeline care and support.
Acorns Shining Stars Appeal recognises the amazing work of the nurses, support workers, physiotherapists, and health care assistants who make up the Acorns care team.
Mum Charlotte, whose daughter Aimee uses Acorns in the Black Country, based in Walsall, says these remarkable men and women are ‘angels in uniform’ and she would be ‘lost without them’.
She said, “Christmas for me is about making memories with my daughter. Seeing her face light up makes my heart glow.
“For children like Aimee you never know if that Christmas is going to be the last one. The staff at Acorns understand this so they do whatever they can to make every moment a magical one.
“When Aimee was born an immense feeling of love overwhelmed me – she was perfect. When she was five days old however, she wasn’t settling. I had this feeling that something was wrong. When the midwife came over, Aimee went all floppy, so we phoned an ambulance.
“They did a heel prick test and the doctor said they needed to do a lumbar puncture – I had no idea what that was. The next thing I remember was Aimee screaming. Panic set it. They told me that her spinal fluid was cloudy, and they knew straight away that she had meningitis.
“She was taken to the high dependency unit and I was told she had a 5% chance of survival over the next 24 hours. Everything became a blur. It felt like my whole world was crumbling around me. Luckily, she fought through.
“However, after four weeks in hospital an ultrasound revealed that the meningitis has permanently damaged Aimee’s brain. I could see from six months old that there were problems.
“I felt really left out and alone. Then I discovered Acorns and people who understood.
“You expect nurses to care but the staff at Acorns go above and beyond. As well as making sure Aimee is happy and comfortable, they try to give her the same experiences that every other child has. They make the impossible possible and this is true even more so at Christmas.
“My Christmas dream was that Aimee could enjoy a traditional Christmas dinner, but it was something I never thought would happen because she’d been tube fed her whole life.
“The staff at Acorns knew my wish so they spent time with Aimee helping her eat solid foods, teaching her special techniques.
“I remember on Christmas Day that year I just sat at the table crying as she had her first taste of Christmas dinner. They’d made my wish come true and they’d created a wonderful memory that any parent should have.
“This year has been tough for us, like it has been for many people. At one point I wasn’t sure if I could cope. But Acorns were there. Not only did they bring around care packages for us, but they were there on the phone checking in on us. They constantly watched over us, making sure we were safe and well.”
None of us know what the future holds, but thanks to the generosity of local businesses and the community, Acorns will be there for every family who needs them.