We’d like to say thank you to all the supporters, fundraisers, campaigners and health professionals who attended our second Thank You event at London’s City Hall on Friday 29 May.
The event was held to mark the various contributions that our supporters have made to our work to ensure that all babies born premature and sick in the UK have the best possible chance of survival and reaching their full potential.
Some of Bliss’ top supporters were acknowledged during an awards ceremony, and awards were given to a wide variety of Bliss supporters, from volunteers to fundraisers to healthcare professionals.
The full list of award winners is as follows:
Sue Spence from Tesco Loves Baby: Making a difference award – Sue has been instrumental in driving our partnership with Tesco and the funds raised have supported our helpline since 2013. Sue has also raised over £5,000 for Bliss through sample sales at Tesco head office.
Julian Thomas: Making a difference award – In November last year, Julian completed a gruelling 950km trek from Antarctica to the South Pole to raise money for Bliss. He completed it without mechanical or wind assistance, one of only around 300 people to have done so.
Ben Wills-Eve: Making a difference award – Ben has been campaigning for Bliss and attending our report launches in Westminster since 2011. Last year, Ben arranged for his then-MP Esther McVey to visit his local special care baby unit. Ben also sits on several local NHS groups and was recently nominated for a Rotary Young Citizen award.
Stuart Carter: Special dedication to families award – Stuart has been volunteering on the Bliss helpline for four years, offering advice and support over the phone to parents or premature and sick babies. He has been instrumental in opening our service out to fathers. Stuart also offers one to one support for parents.
Donna Rasdale: Special dedication to families award – Donna visits her local neonatal unit weekly to offer advice and support to parents of special care babies. She also helps run the Little Miracles Bliss Family Group in Sheffield, offering parents a chance to meet and share advice with others who have had similar experiences. Donna also arranged for gifts to be given to parents of babies who were staying on the neonatal unit.
Stepping Hill Hospital: Improving care award – The neonatal unit’s staff have been extremely committed to improving care for babies and their families. They are engaged in Bliss’ accreditation scheme to provide the best possible family-centred care. They have also implemented an innovative parent passport to help parents document their babies’ progress and note key milestones being reached.
Alex Vere: Public voted Making a difference award – Alex received the award after a public vote. She was one of our top fundraisers of 2014 who ran the Great North Run for Bliss and raised £27,000 for Bliss with a James Bond-themed fundraising evening, Bond for Bliss.
At the awards ceremony, the audience also had a chance to listen from speakers including Bliss’ Chief Executive, Caroline Davey, campaigner Ben Wills-Eve, marathon runner and fundraiser, Chris Uff and Bliss’ outgoing Chair of Trustees, Keith Soper.
After the awards ceremony and speeches, guests went to the top floor of City Hall to chat and socialise while soaking in stunning vistas of London.
We hope everyone who attended the event had a fantastic day, it was lovely meeting some of the people who have supported our work for premature and sick babies.