Tonbridge family's hospital donation in memory of son
by Andy Tong | 17th January 2019
A FAMILY from Five Oak Green near Tonbridge have donated equipment worth more than £1,000 to Tunbridge Wells Hospital in memory of their son.
Daniel Strawson died of a brain tumour in 2007 aged 11 months. His parents, Richard and Susannah, and their children, Thomas, Hannah, Lydia and Faith, have been raising funds for the various charities that helped them when Daniel was ill over the last decade.
When they reached what would have been Daniel’s 10th birthday year, the family felt they wanted to do something special together.
They decided to climb Snowdon and raise at least £1,000 in the process for six worthy causes, each one chosen by a member of the family.
Among the beneficiaries was the Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust, who cared for Daniel at what was then Pembury Hospital.
Seventeen family and friends, ranging in age from six to 77, climbed to the summit in 50mph winds, driving rain and almost zero visibility.
Richard recalled: “The car park attendant did his best to put us off attempting the climb that day. However, we were rather committed and so we decided to continue with the challenge – and what a challenge it was.
“By the time we reached the top, the group was separated and struggling through 50 mph winds, driving rain and almost zero visibility!
“The mountain top café was on the verge of closing due to the bad weather and lack of customers. Fortunately it stayed open for the group to arrive safely, if cold and extremely wet.”
He added: “The reward for our efforts was an unforgettable and special experience. Like Daniel, never to be forgotten.”
The family easily exceeded their fundraising target and have been able to donate more than £1,000 to each of the six causes.
After consulting staff at Tunbridge Wells Hospital, the family presented them with a range of multi-sensory equipment for the children who are undergoing treatment there.
The donations include tables and mood lights which illuminate in a variety of colours by remote control, and Worry Hands attached to walls.
These encourage children not to worry about medical procedures. They place their hand on a Worry Hand print, which lights up red, then slowly changes to green to signify that the worry has been taken away.