Voice of the Jewish News: Nights in will help secure Evie’s legacy
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Voice of the Jewish News: Nights in will help secure Evie’s legacy

This week's editorial reflects on the new Camp Simcha initiative called “Evie’s Night In”, giving respite to parents caring for children with care needs

Lee Bladon with his daughter Evie. Lee supports Camp Simcha, which he says has ‘thrown his family a lifeline’
Lee Bladon with his daughter Evie. Lee supports Camp Simcha, which he says has ‘thrown his family a lifeline’

 

Evie Bladon’s legacy was born when she died, aged three, in 2015. Those familiar with the work of Camp Simcha will have heard of Evie’s Night Owls, a respite service the charity offers to exhausted families caring 24/7. Shortlisted for a Jewish News Night of Heroes Award earlier this year, it is a remarkable example of how grief and loss can channel the most positive change.

Now, Evie’s brother and sister, aged 10 and nine respectively, are launching Evie’s Night In. The idea is that you have a night in with friends but rather than ask them to ‘bring a bottle,’ you ask them to throw into the metaphorical bucket instead.

There are so many good causes out there. All ask for money at this time of year, but few have been inspired by such a fighter. Deprived of oxygen at birth, Evie suffered serious brain damage, which led to cerebral palsy, global developmental delay, epilepsy, severe visual impairment and a number of other medical problems.

She was given two days to live, but survived three years.

Last year, in a personal letter, Prime Minister Theresa May told Evie’s parents: “This work is a remarkable way of honouring Evie’s memory and you should be very proud of what you have achieved.”

If a little girl with such fight in her can outlive expectations by such a margin, and if her heartbroken family can then turn their love for her into help for others in such a phenomenal way, then the least we can do is forego the fizz and commit a few quid to Evie’s legacy.

Now, where’s that metaphorical bucket?

Listen to this week’s episode of The Jewish Views podcast!

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