Thousands of pounds have been raised to help tiny babies born early in Bolton.

Georgina Unsworth and the Bolton Butchers Association (BBA) have raised £3,000 for the Bolton NHS Foundation Trust Neonatal and Paediatrics Speciality Fund through Our Bolton NHS Charity.

Georgina’s motivation to raise the funds began with her experience at Bolton’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) when her daughter, Willow, was born with an atrial flutter in her heart, causing it to beat extremely fast.

A cardioversion procedure was performed, and Willow then remained in NICU until she recovered.

And as a thank you for the NICU’s support the family wanted to give back to the team who had been there for them when they needed it the most.

The money was raised via online donations and the Bolton Butchers Association Butchers’ Ball, which took place at Rivington Hall Barn in January.

Georgina said: “We cannot thank everyone on the unit enough for all their support and the amazing work they did to help our little girl.

“Without them, we don’t know if our daughter would be here today, and for that we are eternally grateful.

“They were there for us every step of the way, from entering the NICU, to taking our little Willow home.

“Raising money for such an amazing cause has been an honour and we hope the money raised can go to the NICU to help other families that are in the same position we were once in.

“It was a scary time for us all as a family but the support we received made it that little bit easier to get through the week we spent in the unit.

“We will never be able to thank the hospital enough but hope that we can continue to raise money to help them in any way we can.”

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Rebecca Mason and Dianne Knox, who were part of the nursing team who cared for Willow, met with Georgina and the team from the BBA to accept their generous donation.

Rebecca said: “To us, it isn’t just a job. We are very much a family on the unit, and we really appreciate any donations.

“Even just raising awareness about what we do and who we are, helps us to carry on doing with what we do best and that is providing better, more positive experiences for babies and their families, when they need it the most.”

Jack Morris from the BBA said: “Every year we host a dinner and dance event, where we also raise money for local charities.

“This year we were delighted to raise money for Our Bolton NHS Charity and the neonatal unit at Royal Bolton Hospital.”

The Neonatal Paediatrics Speciality Fund is used to enhance the experience of patients and their families on the children’s wards and the neonatal unit.

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