TWO children with serious health challenges will be able to enjoy a week of fun next year thanks to a charity donation.
Havant-based charity Over The Wall originally approached The Co-operative Funeralcare in Widley for a donation of £50 to buy some cakes to help with fundraising.
When community fundraising officer Judith Meagher phoned the funeral home to ask about the money, funeral co-ordinator Rianne Rose gave her the news that they weren't donating £50 - they were instead going to donate £1,350 with help from other branches.
Karen Willmett, funeral co-ordinator, said: ‘It's such a special cause that everyone wants to help out. We heard how the children have such serious health challenges that many of them find it hard just to make friends.
‘It's not just funding these activity camps for free… it is everything that is involved from medical staff to refrigeration units for medication. We are so happy to hear that our donation will make a real difference.’
Nine funeral branches from Southern Co-op made up the final donation of £1,350 including The Co-operative Funeralcare in Widley, Hayling Island, Leigh Park, Emsworth, Cowplain, Cosham and Waterlooville.
Over The Wall has increased the numbers of campers attending its free residential activity camps for seriously ill children from 260 in 2010 to 867 in 2018, with plans to reach 1,500 by 2022.
Judith Meagher said: ‘When they first told me I screamed down the phone. I only went in to the branch on the off chance - I was actually visiting the cake store next door. I had gone away thinking ‘great' I can buy lots of cakes for £50!
‘So to get a donation of £1,350 is just the best news. It made me very emotional. That will pay for two children such as siblings to go to our family camp.
‘We look after children affected by a huge number of different illnesses. At camp, we aim to build each camper's confidence, self-esteem and coping strategies through challenges tailored for each child which could range from climbing a wall to making a new friend.’
To find out more about attending a camp, visit otw.org.uk.