Evie’s Night Owls
938. Sam Bladon
939. Lee Bladon
Sam and Lee Bladon, from London, are the founders of ‘Evie’s Night Owls,’ an overnight respite project honouring the memory of their daughter Evie.
The project, which is part of the children’s charity ‘Camp Simcha’, provides support for families where children require round-the-clock care as a result of complex medical conditions. Evie was born with severe brain damage and lived with multiple health issues including cerebral palsy, global developmental delay, epilepsy, severe visual impairment and a number of other medical problems which resulted in a need for constant care.
The ‘Night Owls’ project provides support in the family home, allowing parents to get a night’s sleep, have time for a rest or for to enjoy an evening out together. The couple are currently fundraising in order to be offer the service to more parents more regularly. Fundraising events have included ‘Dress to Impress,’ which saw a local business donate hundreds of party dresses that were sold at a special event. In just three months Sam and Lee raised £10,000.
In a personal letter to Sam and Lee, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“Through ‘Evie’s Night Owls’ you are supporting many families in need of a respite break. The care that your fundraising is supporting is helping families to spend valuable time together and parents to get a much needed restful night sleep. This work is a truly remarkable way of honouring Evie’s memory and you should be very proud of what you have achieved as a family.”
Neville Goldschneider, chief executive of ‘Camp Simcha’ said:
“We are absolutely thrilled that the Prime Minister’s Points of Light award has recognised Sam and Lee Bladon’s hard work, strength and relentless dedication to making ‘Camp Simcha’s Evie’s Night Owls’ respite service a reality. All of us at ‘Camp Simcha’ are grateful to have had the opportunity to get to know their beautiful little Evie – and we are humbled by the way Sam and Lee have taken such heartbreak and created something that will help so many others in Evie’s memory.”
Sam and Lee said:
“We are really humbled to receive this unexpected recognition, of the Prime Minister’s Points of Light award. After we lost our beautiful daughter Evie we wanted to find a way to honour and keep her memory alive, by helping others who are facing similar daily battles to the ones we experienced.
“We set up the ‘Evie’s Night Owls’ committee to raise funds for an expansion of ‘Camp Simcha’s respite service. ‘Camp Simcha’ was there for us when we needed them and it seems fitting that we are able to establish Evie’s legacy through them.”
Pictured below: Sam and Lee with their award and Camp Simcha Chief Executive Neville Goldschneider at a special World Cup screening fundraiser event organised by ‘Camp Simcha’ with the ‘Evie’s Night Owls’ committee