The Axis Foundation has donated £23,000 to Sparks, a children’s medical research charity, whom Axis adopted in 2015 as one of our sponsored charities alongside Demelza Children’s Hospice.
Sparks is a national charity that funds pioneering research to find cures and new treatments to help children overcome their illnesses. 1 in 30 children is born everyday in the UK with a condition that may affect them for life which is why we inducted Sparks into our charity roster to support them in discovering cures for childhood illnesses.
The money was raised through the Axis Foundation’s annual charity ball, corporate donations and the excellent fundraising efforts of Axis employees across all offices. Giving back is in our DNA, it’s the reason why we fundraise so tirelessly and why everyone is given a volunteering day to use.
Sparks was formed in 1991 and since then has funded more than 290 ground-breaking research projects in over 80 hospitals, universities and research institutions across the UK and overseas. One child that benefitted from the incredible work that Sparks do is Sebs, who was born prematurely, and his mum Holly shares their story:
“It wasn’t long after my 20 week scan and I was on a night shift at work when I woke up from a nap, realising something was really wrong. I went to hospital where I was given some medication to slow down the process of the birth and steroids to help mature the baby’s lungs and protect his brain. After two days in hospital, Sebs arrived. I was just over 26 weeks into my pregnancy.
“We couldn’t hold him until he was about four days old. It was really hard looking at him through the glass in the neo-natal intensive care ward.
“He eventually came off oxygen at 36 weeks and finally came home at 37 weeks; 81 days after he was born. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, ever. You feel this almighty guilt about it all because you’re just looking at your baby and thinking ‘he shouldn’t be there, he should be in my tummy’, but instead he’s just suffering so much.
“Now he’s cheeky, funny and really cute with his little brother. He loves cars, trains and Thomas the Tank Engine. He’s just a normal, confident three-year-old, really!”
Sparks CEO, Rob Booker offered the following in reaction to the donation:
“It’s fantastic to have the on-going support of the extremely generous Axis Foundation. Having such a significant donation will no doubt make a big difference to the number of projects we’re able to fund, and really help with our aim to give every child the best possible start in life.”