At 12pm on Friday a father and his family visited the Neonatal Unit at the Leicester Royal Infirmary with two footballers and presented a cheque for over £1,000 as well as donated toys and clothing for premature babies.
Neil Pursglove, father of 18 month old Ivy who was born via caesarean at just 25 weeks and 4 days old, visited the unit with his wife Georgina and footballers Luke Hall and Lee Pritchard.
When Ivy was born in Glenfield Hospital on 4th July 2014 she weighed just 1lb 3oz and was incredibly premature due to Georgina’s complex heart condition.
After being given a 50/50 chance of survival the tiny baby was transferred to the Neonatal Unit at Royal where Neil said that they “performed miracles.” 15 weeks later, Ivy was allowed home after spending 15 weeks in hospital.
Neil added: “Ivy is now 18 months old, she’s now completely off oxygen and with regular check-ups at the hospital, she is doing fantastically well.
“The incredible team of doctors and nurses were just amazing and the care they gave to our baby Ivy was just unbelievable, so we wanted to give a little back.”
As Neil is the Manager of the local football club, Cosby United FC, club captain Luke Hall decided to get the players of the club to get together and raise money for the unit that was caring for Ivy whilst she was in their care.
Whilst Neil’s daughter was in hospital they kept the club running and also participated in “Movember”, where they raised an incredible £1,000 in only 4 weeks.
Marie Hoy, Ward Manager of the Neonatal unit, said: “We are very grateful for Cosby United FC’s fundraising efforts to improve our facilities for parents who spend a lot of time on the unit.”
She added: “We care for extremely premature babies and their families on a daily basis, but don’t always see how they progress after they go home. It is really lovely to see Ivy so healthy and happy; it makes our often stressful work worthwhile.”
The Neonatal unit, based at Leicester Royal Infirmary, is a state of the art facility which has the capacity for 36 cots which was opened in September 2010.