Couple’s relief over DGH room cash

A GRIEVING couple who complained a bereavement room they helped fund had still not been built seven years after they handed over £7,000 have been given their money back.

Monica Corrina-Kavakli and her husband Aydin set about raising cash for the new family room after suffering the heartache of several traumatic miscarriages and the tragic death of their young daughter Ella in 2002,

The pair hit out at the NHS trust which runs the District General Hospital for dragging its heels on the project and spoke to the Herald last week about their frustration.

And, despite the fact the trust confirmed work would start next month, the couple have decided to take the cash back and begin looking at a lasting tribute to little Ella elsewhere.

The overall cost of the new bereavement room is around £54,000, with the cash-strapped trust managing to find the extra £47,000.

Now though, with the £7,000 donation returned, the hospital will foot the bill for the entire revamp.

Mrs Corrina-Kavali said, “Although part of us feels saddened that it has had to come to this, the decision made by Darren Grayson [the trust’s chief executive] and his team to return our donation to us, has for the first time in eight very long years given us a certain degree of relief, hope and peace of mind.

“Next July, Ella should have been celebrating her 10th birthday. Now we can focus all our efforts on something really positive, rather than exhausting all our energies on what was beginning to feel like an endless battle.

“We have many, many ideas for projects to help other parents who have lost a child as we did and by helping others we hope to fulfil our yearning to create something special in Ella’s memory out of something so cruel and unfair.

“Our support and admiration for the midwives, doctors and special care nurses at Eastbourne will never ever falter.

“We thank Mr Grayson and the trust for their decision and for finally showing us and our daughter the dignity and respect we feel we’ve deserved.

“If they continue to proceed with the Bereavement Project as they have stated then we will offer as much advice and support as is required.”

A spokesman for the trust confirmed the money had been returned but that the work would go ahead as planned next month.