The now-annual Jake’s Coffee Morning, in memory of Portadown toddler Jake Flaherty, will be held tomorrow (Saturday) during Country Comes to Town.
Funds raised will go to support the work of the Children’s Heartbeat Trust and Down’s Syndrome NI.
Jake’s coffee morning has been running since 2011 when Jake’s grandparents Ted and Lorraine Hunniford decided to run a fundraiser following their grandson’s first set of surgeries.
His mum Julie said, “Jake was born on May 19, 2011 and was diagnosed as having Down’s Syndrome shortly after. This came with a lot of complications in Jake’s case, the first of which was diagnosis at three weeks old of cardiac failure due to a complex heart defect.
“Jake fought through a lot of difficulties, Hirschsprung’s Disease, and a lung and breathing disorder. On 21st May, 2013, two days after his second birthday, Jake lost his fight for life.”
Speaking of the fundraiser, Julie said, “It really is a great family day, coffee, tea, scones, tray bakes, soup and stew at lunch time, with face painting and activities for the children by the fabulous Jennie from local company Twinkle and Twist - all we ask for is a donation at the door.
“Last year we were able to pass the £12,000 raised mark. Our team of helpers are invaluable as is the support we have received over the years. We could not continue to do this without the support of the ladies (and gents) in the kitchen and the local businesses that support us every year with our raffle.
“It’s a day I find very bittersweet now, but I love seeing everyone pop in - all the little ones we met during our time in hospital and all the lovely people we met along the way. It really does my heart good.”