Fundraiser held at Gosport school to help cleft lip and palate association

13/6/15''CLAPA fundraiser at Leesland Infant School in Gosport. Emily Marden 12 with friend Chloe Henderson 12 in a Morris Marina rally car''Picture: Paul Jacobs (150949-3) PPP-150613-153036006
13/6/15''CLAPA fundraiser at Leesland Infant School in Gosport. Emily Marden 12 with friend Chloe Henderson 12 in a Morris Marina rally car''Picture: Paul Jacobs (150949-3) PPP-150613-153036006

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KIND-HEARTED mum Shelley Jackson held a family fun day to raise money for a charity close to her heart.

Hundreds of pounds were raised at a day packed full of activities on Saturday at Leesland Infant School, in Whitworth Road, Gosport, in aid of the Cleft Lip and Palate Association.

13/6/15''CLAPA fundraiser at Leesland Infant School in Gosport. Cake bakers L-R Elissa Talbot and Hannah Mitchell. ''Picture: Paul Jacobs (150949-1) PPP-150613-153015006

13/6/15''CLAPA fundraiser at Leesland Infant School in Gosport. Cake bakers L-R Elissa Talbot and Hannah Mitchell. ''Picture: Paul Jacobs (150949-1) PPP-150613-153015006

Shelley’s daughter Mara-Jade, five, was born with a cleft lip and the charity has helped her ever since she was born.

The 26-year-old, along with friends Dawn Farrugia and Kim Fuller, decided to hold the fundraiser at Mara-Jade’s school to thank the charity.

Shelley, from Gosport, said: ‘The charity has done so much for us, they have been there from the day my daughter was born.

‘They have helped us with feeding her and she had to have a tube in her nose and they were out within 24 hours to see us and they’ve been in contact ever since.

The charity has done so much for us, they have been there from the day my daughter was born.

Shelley Jackson, 26, from Gosport

‘They’ve been there whenever we needed them. The support has been brilliant.’

A cleft is a gap in the upper lip, which occurs when areas of the face do not join together properly when a baby is developing during pregnancy.

It occurs in one in every 700 babies born in the UK.

The event saw scores of families enjoy bouncy castles, fairground games, sport, sweets and a raffle.

13/6/15''CLAPA fundraiser at Leesland Infant School in Gosport. Front L-R Layton Golding 6, Kyra Dean 5 with her father Stephen Dean in Goal''Picture: Paul Jacobs (150949-2) PPP-150613-153026006

13/6/15''CLAPA fundraiser at Leesland Infant School in Gosport. Front L-R Layton Golding 6, Kyra Dean 5 with her father Stephen Dean in Goal''Picture: Paul Jacobs (150949-2) PPP-150613-153026006

Dawn, whose twin daughters Elisa and Emma go to the same school as Mara-Jade, said that as the event went so well, they hope to put on another one next year.

Dawn, 32, said: ‘We organised it all in six weeks. We had lots of help which was great and the kids loved it.

‘I’m really chuffed with how it went. We could maybe do it bigger and better next year, we all enjoyed it so much.’

The friends had help from Tobi Savage, from Gosport, who spent the day DJ-ing. Tobi’s son Lennox, four, was also born with a cleft lip and he also received help and support from Clapa. Lennox has had two operations already and will need to have a further two when his adult teeth come through.

Tobi, 26, said: ‘The work the charity does is amazing. It is a charity that is very close to my heart.’