This week we welcomed students and representatives from Ton Yr Ywen Primary School who raised money as part of the Healthy Hearts for St Dwynwen event. We were delighted to hear all about their fundraising efforts to support Martha’s Dancing Heart campaign.

Headteacher Mrs James-Griffiths was thrilled with the way in which the school community embraced the challenge of “Healthy Hearts for St Dwynwen’s Day”. As well as learning about St Dwynwen, the children all undertook activities in school focussing on looking after their well-being and their hearts. As an additional challenge the Friends of Ton Yr Ywen and the Headteacher also set a whole school challenge for all of the children to get involved in. This included a bingo-style sponsorship activity to complete at home with their families, raising funds for the Martha’s Dancing Heart campaign and for the Friends of Ton Yr Ywen Charity too.

All involved were keen to support a local heart charity for this heart-themed fundraiser. Given the impact that Martha’s Dancing Heart has had on the fantastic service developments for the Children’s Cardiology Services in the University Hospital of Wales (almost within sight of the school), 50% of donations from the event were pledged for this cause.

Martha, along with mum Michelle, had the opportunity to tell the children more about the campaign and how their donations will be used. They were also joined by Professor Orhan Uzun, Dr Nadia Hajiani Consultant Paediatric & Fetal Cardiologists, and Dr Victor Ofoe Consultant Paediatric Cardiologist.

Mum, Michelle said, “A huge thank you to all the children, staff, parents and supporters of Ton Yr Ywen. What you’ve done is absolutely amazing. Such a fantastic ‘healthy hearts’ challenge and the £1357.57 raised will be put to immediate use helping children and families with heart conditions in hospitals all over the country. You are our Heart Heroes! Thank you.”

Innovative work by the Children’s Heart Unit and South Wales Paediatric Cardiovascular Network, working closely with patients and their families, has enabled children with heart arrhythmia to wear technology that monitors their heart activity.

The watches monitor ECG levels and replace uncomfortable, expensive and less accurate equipment. It has led to the University Hospital of Wales being recognised as a Centre of Excellence.

Professor Orhan Uzun began working with his patients’ families (Welsh Heart Families) and the wider team consisting of Paediatric Cardiac Specialist Nurses, Paediatricians with an interest in Cardiology in District General Hospitals, and Children’s Wales Air Ambulance to find a solution – one that has proven beneficial on many levels.

Funds raised will be used to purchase additional technology to help ,many more children and their families.

Martha’s Dancing Heart was started by Michelle, who has pledged to raise £1 million in her family’s lifetime in support of Neonatal Services and Paediatric Cardiology Services who cared for Martha after her birth. She has participated in multiple Cardiff Half Marathons and other athletic challenges and has organised a variety of community fundraising events. If you would like to support the campaign, please do get in touch

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