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Gravesend family organises charity ball as thank you for help it received when daughter was seriously ill

PUBLISHED: 12:33 06 May 2015 | UPDATED: 12:33 06 May 2015

Gadd family

Gadd family

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Boost for the 'home from home' for eight weeks during traumatic hospital treatment

A family from Gravesend pulled out all the stops to organise a glamorous ball for a charity that gave them a place to stay near their critically ill daughter while she was in hospital.

The Gadd family – Sue, Colin and sisters Charlotte and Jordan – organised a glittering evening of food and entertainment for more than 140 guests at the Hilton Dartford last Friday (April 24) and raised £5,048

The ball was held in aid of Ronald McDonald House Camberwell, the free ‘home away from home’ accommodation for families who have children being treated at King’s College Hospital in London.

Guests sat down to a two-course meal before taking part in a charity auction and raffle. They also heard moving stories from families who had stayed at a Ronald McDonald House while their children were in hospital.

The Gadds have been committed supporters of Ronald McDonald House Charities, the independent charity that runs the facility in Camberwell, since staying at another Ronald McDonald House near Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital in London 17 years ago when Jordan was dramatically taken ill at just three-weeks-old.

The Ronald McDonald House was home to the Gadd family for eight weeks in 1998 while newborn baby Jordan was under the care of doctors and nurses at the nearby hospital. Jordan had been rushed by ambulance to London after she suddenly stopped breathing and began turning blue at home.

While Jordan fought for life, the Gadd family, far from their home in Kent, were grateful to have somewhere free to stay so they could be together as a family near their sick child in hospital.

Years later, the family, including 17 year-old Jordan, have become serial fundraisers for Ronald McDonald House Charities – with this most recent ball the latest in a line of charitable achievements.

Charlotte Gadd explained: “Jordan now has a very bright future ahead of her and she volunteers regularly at Ronald McDonald House Camberwell where I am deputy house manager.

“Although the charity has never asked anything of our family, we all feel absolutely indebted to them for giving us a home away from home while Jordan was ill and for allowing us to stay together as a family.

“Last year we organised a fundraising ball for the Ronald McDonald House near Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital which was a great success. Rather than reinventing the wheel, we decided to do the same again this year – only this time for another, equally deserving, Ronald McDonald House.”

She added: “It was a lot of work but the whole family pulled together and everyone did their bit. We all had a role to play, from finding and booking a venue and getting our hands on auction and raffle prizes, to filling the places.

“Luckily we had an amazing response from friends, businesses and existing supporters of the Camberwell House. It was a splendid evening and we are really happy with the result.”

For more information about Ronald McDonald House Camberwell, visit www.rmhc.org.uk/camberwell.

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