A family whose daughter was rushed to hospital the week before Christmas has praised the kindness of staff at her school who bought presents and supported them throughout the stressful time.
Chloe Smith had to undergo a major operation after a problem with her bowel and was taken to the Royal Alexandra Children’s hospital in Brighton on December 17.
While her father, Darren, stayed over with his nine-year-old daughter, Chloe’s special needs teacher from Parkland Junior School visited her brother and sister who had been off poorly with a cold at the end of term. Christmas presents were later delivered for all three children to enjoy, along with their sister, Shannon, 17.
Mr Smith, of Freshford Close, said, “All the children have special needs and go to Parkland. Chloe’s school organised a whip round after I informed them how ill she was.
“They got presents for all the children. I was with Chloe at the hospital full time and I was unable to go out and get Christmas presents. My wife is disabled and couldn’t go out.”
As well as delivering Christmas presents for the four siblings a member of staff came to the family home to visit Chloe’s brother Ashley, eight and her sister Bethany, 10. As well as spending time with the pair they also made a table decoration for Chloe, who returned to the family home on December 22.
Festive gifts for the delighted family included Barbie dolls, colouring books, board games and Play-Doh.
Mr Smith added, “It’s unbelievable I could never imagine the generosity and caring about our daughter. It’s amazing.
“It’s over and beyond anything I could ever have imagined. The school is absolutely first class.”
Mr Smith’s father Arthur, who contacted the Herald after being overwhelmed by the school’s generosity, added, “For people to do that in not exactly our hour of need but when we were under the cosh a bit I think is brilliant.”