By Tristan Harris Tuesday 31 December 2013 Updated: 31/12 09:46
A CHARITY started by a Bromsgrove couple in memory of their brave baby girl Libby Mae who died at just two-weeks-old has raised £37,512.50 in less than six months.
Charlotte and Richard Sharratt, from Catshill, officially registered Libby Mae's Little Angels in July after the loss of the youngster in May. Libby Mae, who was born at Birmingham Women's Hospital on April 26, had a rare condition whereby a vein between her left lung and her heart did not develop properly.
The cash raised will help provide neo-natal care equipment at hospitals throughout the Midlands.
And there was a special surprise for the couple over Christmas after a surprise seasonal hamper, from Simply First Wines, was delivered to their home by Birmingham City stars Chris Burke and Callum Reilly.
The charity was nominated for an EZE Wish - a scheme being run by the football club and its partners EZE Group which is designed to recognise and reward Blues fans who have overcome adversity or shown tremendous community spirit.
Richard, a Blues season ticket holder for nearly 20 years, was nominated by his friend Martin Roche who said: “After suffering the worst sort of year that none of us would ever want to experience in our lifetime, Richard has thrown himself into helping others so his daughter’s short life wasn’t for nothing.
"He thoroughly deserves a little treat to show him that people care about him and are so proud of what he’s doing – Richard has become an inspiration to all his friends.”
As well as delivering the hamper, the players chatted to the couple about their charity work and bought a Libby Mae Christmas bauble to boost the charity's coffers.
Richard said: "It was a complete shock to open the door and be greeted by two of the Blues players who I cheer on from my seat in the Tilton Road.
“I was genuinely overcome with emotion as it was such a wonderful gesture from my friend and of course EZE Group and the club who made it all happen.
“We’ve obviously had a very traumatic year but we wanted to give something back because without the care Libby received from Birmingham Women’s Hospital and Birmingham Children’s Hospital we wouldn’t have had one day with her let alone two weeks.”
Dominic O’Reilly, chief executive of EZE Group, said when they heard about Libby Mae they had no hesitation in organising the surprise Christmas delivery.
“Nothing can compensate for the death of a daughter, but Richard and Charlotte have shown tremendous courage and couldn’t be more deserving.”
For more on the charity, visit www.libbymaeslittleangels.com, 'like' Little Mae’s Little Angels on Facebook or follow the cause on Twitter: @libbymaesangels. To donate £5, text LMLA13 £5.00 to 70070.
The pair have plenty planned for 2014 to ensure Libby Mae's Little Angels continues to raise funds for neo-natal care equipment at hospitals throughout the Midlands.
For a video of the Blues' players' visit, go to http://youtu.be/WviWapwpGOo
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