The pupils at Ribbon Academy, Murton, initially hoped to raise £500 in aid of heart charity Red Sky Foundation, after the charity’s founder visited the school to teach them the importance of a healthy heart and how a defibrillator works.
Instead, by taking part in a sponsored run, obstacle courses, triathlons, treasure hunts and danceathons, they managed to raise a grand total of £5,117.66.
And that has funded three defibrillators for their school and local community
Red Sky Foundation supports cardiac-related causes across the North East, helping babies, children and adults living with heart conditions and was founded by Sergio and Emma Petrucci after their daughter, Luna, now eight, was born with two complex heart conditions.
To thank all those who cared for her, the couple began fundraising for the Children’s Heart Unit and have raised more than £700,000 to date.
“Due to the generosity of the local community, the fundraising target to support Red Sky Foundation was multiplied by 10,” said teacher Ashleigh Sheridan, who organised the children’s fundraising efforts.
“Children have enjoyed learning about the importance of following a healthy diet and lifestyle to maintain a good heart and have also been taught skills to help save lives.”
Sergio Petrucci, Red Sky Foundation said: “The defibrillators will protect pupils, staff and visitors to the schools, including the Murton communities from sudden cardiac arrest.
“We’re delighted with the amount raised by the school, which has far exceeded everyone’s expectations to help provide even greater cardiac care for anyone who needs help.”
Red Sky Foundation has also helped fund two state-of-the-art echo machines for Sunderland Royal Hospital and James Cook Hospital along with a specialist organ transplant machine which keeps a donor heart healthy for longer giving surgeons more time to perform a transplant.
It has also funded countless defibrillators across the North East and helped to secure a specialist Fontan nursing post in the region, the first of its kind in the UK.
For more information, visit www.redskyfoundation.com