Chesterfield family raises £236,600 for charity that was 'shining light in a dark time'

A dedicated Chesterfield family have raised £236,600 to thank a charity that was a ‘shining light in a dark time’ for giving them a place to stay when their son suddenly became seriously ill.

Thursday, 16th January 2020, 11:00 am

Over the last decade, Marcus and Laura Leverton have held black-tie events to raise funds for The Sick Children’s Trust.

The charity, which gives families with a seriously ill child in hospital a warm and comfortable place to stay and friendly ear to listen, supported the couple in 2009 when their son, Harry, was rushed to Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

The couple were given a place to stay at the charity’s ‘Home from Home’ Treetop House, Sheffield Children’s Hospital, free of charge. This meant they could be by their son’s side within minutes, rather than facing an 40-minute drive.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

To thank the charity, in 2010 Marcus organised ‘The Leverton Ball’ to raise £2,000. Ten years on, the event has become bi-annual which has raised enough money to give 7,887 families with a child in hospital a place to stay.

Marcus said: “The Sick Children’s Trust was a shining light in a very dark time. Our room at Treetop House was a quiet little sanctuary to gather our thoughts, have a cry, get some sleep, and have a shower and gain that little bit more strength that my baby boy required from his parent before heading back to his bedside. How can you put a value on such a fundamentally necessary facility that The Sick Children’s Trust provide?

“Our story is one of with a positive ending although at the time we were being prepared for a very different outcome. Harry fought off the three viral infections and the non-related bowel perforation to fully recover and is now a football-crazy 12 year old. I made a promise when Harry was in surgery that if he came back to me I would do something to help The Sick Children’s Trust, something to somehow repay my gratitude to the charity.

“I had no idea if there would be an appetite for my event but it has grown in to a bi-annual event. Harry and Samuel, his younger brother, are now instrumental in the success of these events. We’re so proud that, as a family, we have been able to support the trust over the years and we are really looking forward to continuing with our fundraising efforts.”