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Bash in the Barn in Ballyward organised by Christopher and Victoria Simpson

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A FUNDRAISING night raised funds for two “invaluable” charities who went “above and beyond” for a little Ballyward girl.
Harriet Simpson’s parents, Victoria and Christopher organised a ‘Bash in the Barn’ on Saturday, 11 August to raise awareness and funds for the Children’s Heartbeat Trust and the Ronald McDonald House charity.
The barn dance was at the family’s Slieve Croob Farm, Clonvaraghan Road.
“Christopher and I wanted to highlight the invaluable services that both charities offer,” Victoria said.
Victoria was informed at her 20-week antenatal scan that Harriet had a heart condition called Tetralogy of Fallot, a rare and complex heart defect that occurs in about five out of every 10,000 babies.
It is a form of congenital heart disease presenting a problem with the heart’s structure and function due to abnormal development before birth.
“Following the diagnosis a care plan was put in place and I received an absolute first-class service from the NHS,” said Victoria.
“Harriet was born at the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast on 14 March 2017 and she spent her first 24 hours in the neonatal unit for observation purposes due to the known heart condition.”
After five days the new parents were able to bring Harriet home and Victoria said that the “excellent care” continued.
“The follow-up care we received with District Nurses, Health Visitors and the Clark Clinic in Belfast was fantastic.
“There was so much support and guidance from every health care professional who was involved with Harriet.”
At eight months old Harriet had heart surgery at the Evelina Children’s Hospital in London.
While there, Victoria and Christopher stayed at the Ronald McDonald House Evelina, which Victoria said was a “real home-from-home environment”.
Victoria said that the support from both the Ronald McDonald House charity and Children’s Heartbeat Trust was very much appreciated during their trying times.

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