Momentum Children’s Charity, a small charity that supports children with cancer and life-challenging conditions, is seeking urgent help to find a new beach hut on Milford-on-Sea beach, after being told that their existing hut is at risk of demolition due to lack of protection from the elements and the pebbles on the beach not being replenished.
The beach hut has been used by more than 250 families, whose children are seriously ill, since its purchase in July 2015. The charity, that is based in Kingston-upon-Thames owns two holiday cabins at Shorefield Country Park in the New Forest. The cabins and beach hut are available for children and their families for respite breaks, allowing them to get away from the challenges of harsh treatment for cancer or other illnesses, and to enjoy some precious time together 'being normal' as a family. Having a child with cancer or serious illness rules out a holiday for many families, but Momentum Children's Charity enables a much-needed break, at no cost and with no penalties for last-minute changes or cancellations.
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Helen Lewis, mother to Ciara, who was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia in April 2016 says, “The beach hut is utterly unique because it makes so many special memories. We have had the pleasure of using it on several occasions whilst our daughter was seriously ill. I, like other parents who are supported by Momentum Children’s Charity, would feel desperately sad if there is no beach hut for other families to enjoy. This is a place where memories are made for families - happy times, amidst a sea of treatment and hospital admissions. Many families don’t know if it will be their last holiday with their child. Some families return to the hut to grieve, remember and celebrate their child’s life. We, fortunately, have not lost our child. However, it does hold an almost spiritual existence to us as a family. It’s where we experienced most of the extreme emotions during her treatment; fear, hope and happiness.”
Alistair Wood, father to Daisy, who was diagnosed with cancer in September 2016 says, “The beach hut was one of the highlights of our trip. It provided some freedom and fun to Daisy’s older sister, who was able to enjoy the beach and sea in the company of all. If it weren’t for the beach hut we wouldn’t have been able to spend the entire afternoon on the beach, as we would not have had the shelter from the weather. It is very sad knowing that other families might not be able to enjoy the freedom and release that the hut provides.”
Bianca Effemey, CEO and Founder of Momentum Children’s Charity says “I'm deeply concerned about the current situation, having seen other beach huts so close to ours already being taken down. The beach hut has created so many memories for hundreds of families and they are devastated. Within the beach hut, there are pebbles that have been decorated by children that have visited and it just shows how precious it is to so many. We purchased the beach hut when we recognised that very sick children struggled to enjoy the beach without a safe place to rest and it breaks my heart thinking we will lose something that offers children in the future a place to sit and enjoy the beach, like every other child. I just hope we can find a solution, quickly and before our busy summer period.”
The charity is looking for anyone from the local community that could help them occupy a beach hut on higher ground. You can contact Bianca Effemey, CEO and Founder of Momentum Children’s Charity on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 8974 5931.
It would be great if someone can help.
Momentum Children’s Charity