Staff at Cygnet’s Sheffield Day Services have been awarded the ‘Individual and Supporter Organisation Award’ in the Yorkshire Air Ambulance’s Recognition Awards for their efforts in raising money following the death of a co-workers son.
The team members from the Cygnet Health Care-run service, which supports individuals with learning disabilities and autism, started their fundraising efforts for Yorkshire Air Ambulance following the death at home of Alfie Hague, the son of Michelle, a staff member at the service.
Yorkshire Air Ambulance, an independent charity providing a lifesaving helicopter rapid response emergency service to 5 million people across the whole of Yorkshire, had responded to the emergency and were on the scene to support Alfie’s family.
The charity relies on the donations of individuals and organisations in order keep their air ambulance helicopters maintained and in the air.
Alfie’s family decided they wanted to do something to say thank you and after friends and family began to donate in memory of Alfie, the team at Sheffield Day Services decided they wanted to join in as well.
Alfie, who was a pupil at Westfield School and lived in Hackenthorpe, was taken suddenly ill on 10 January 2021 and paramedics, including a crew from Yorkshire Air Ambulance, were called but were sadly unable to resuscitate him and he was pronounced dead at his home. An inquest ruled he died as a result of an epileptic seizure.
One of the staff’s first fundraising efforts was a 25km walk around a local country park in the Rother Valley. Other fundraising activities included a fun day with a cake stall, bric-a-brac sale, a raffle and other games. The day was a great success with service users and their families also joining in with the fun.
The staff team, friends and family have raised a massive £6,300 for Yorkshire Air Ambulance.
On the team being recognised for their fundraising efforts Helen Ullyatt, Service Manager, said: “We were delighted to have been nominated for an award from Yorkshire Air Ambulance, but to find out we had won was amazing. We feel both humbled and proud. Something amazing came from a group of people all working together out of love for Michelle, our brilliant staff member.
“I am so proud of the staff team and how we can all come together after something so tragic and make a difference.”
Sheffield Day Services, on Spa Lane, Woodhouse, specialises in supporting individuals with a primary diagnosis of a learning disability, in addition to those with complex health needs, physical disabilities and those with autism.