Jack & Jill Children’s Foundation hopes to raise €1 million through its Christmas appeal to support children with complex and life-limiting medical conditions to stay at home this festive season. The charity provides in-home nursing care and respite support for over 400 children with severe to profound neurodevelopmental delay, up to the age of six.
The charity recorded a 16 per cent rise in the hours of nursing care it provided to families last year and predicts a further rise this year. It has supported over 2,800 families since it was founded by Jonathan Irwin and Mary Ann O’Brien 25 years ago. The public can support Jack & Jill by signing up as a monthly donor or by buying from its gift collection.
The Jack & Jill collection includes candles from Paul and William Costelloe, the Odlums Big Book of Baking, signed Incognito Art Prints, Gift of Time cards and exclusively designed Christmas cards from Kildare artist Laura Dempsey aka Pickled Pom Pom. By making a donation or purchase people are supporting local families through home nursing care hours.
For parents Shane and Clare McHugh, who live in Maynooth with their three children, including four-year-old Ben who receives Jack & Jill nursing care, the gift of time is a big support. Ben’s condition remains undiagnosed, despite many tests. He suffers from epilepsy, autism, sleep, sensory and autonomic disorders, and can’t feed himself, speak or walk.