Poorly Leeds babies spending Christmas in hospital given festive gifts by charity

Diane Eyre with her partner Keith Richardson and baby Noah are given a sock monkey gift by Bliss volunteers Joy Dykes (front) and Nicola Carney. Picture by Simon Hulme.
Diane Eyre with her partner Keith Richardson and baby Noah are given a sock monkey gift by Bliss volunteers Joy Dykes (front) and Nicola Carney. Picture by Simon Hulme.
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Sick and premature babies who are spending their first days on Leeds hospital wards at Christmas time have been given heartwarming gifts.

More than 90 sock monkeys, paid for through generous donations, have been delivered to the parents of babies on wards at Leeds General Infirmary and Leeds St James’s Hospital as well as Airedale and Harrogate units.

Otley mum Helen Jackson, 38, organised the deliveries after her son Thomas was born prematurely in 2010. She now volunteers for premature and sick baby charity Bliss to help others.

Helen said: “Having a baby in special care is very isolating at any time of the year but Christmas is somewhat more difficult for families especially those with siblings to consider too.

“We were very lucky to bring Thomas home two weeks before his first Christmas and our hearts go out to those who will be spending the day at the side of their baby. We hope these gifts bring them a little bit of joy.”

She worked with Tilly Tally Baby Design Furniture to attract donations from the public to offer gifts to newborns. Firm R&C Cooper Transport sponsored 40 of the toys.

Visit bliss.org.uk for further information on the support charity.

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