Inverurie family help celebrate 60 years of The BHF
Landmarks and buildings across Scotland will be turning red next week to mark the British Heart Foundation’s 60th birthday and to celebrate six decades of life saving research into heart and circulatory diseases.
Among them will be Aberdeen Football Club, who will show their support for the nation’s heart charity by lighting up Pittodrie Stadium on July 28 – the day the BHF turns 60.
Jade McWilliam (20) from Inverurie knows from personal experience just how important research has been.
Jade was born 10 weeks premature with a congenital heart condition and had a cardiac arrest when she was just 15 days old. She had to undergo life saving surgery and at the time, weighing only 2lbs 2ozs, she was believed to be the smallest baby in the UK to survive open heart surgery.
Over the years, Jade has required further surgeries but has never let having a congenital heart condition hold her back.
She said: “It is really important to me to help mark the BHF’s 60th birthday because I am living proof of the benefits of research into heart and circulatory diseases. There have been huge advances in the last six decades and even during my lifetime. I can do things that someone born 60 years ago with my condition could never have contemplated.”
Over the years, Jade and her family have given up their time to raise awareness of the work of the BHF and helped raise tens of thousands of pounds for life saving research. They’ve also given talks to schools and businesses and helped organise large scale CPR teaching sessions.
Jade’s mum, Mags McWilliam, adds: “In a nutshell the British Heart Foundation means the world to us. Without it, we wouldn't have our precious Jade. Too many lives are lost to heart disease and that’s why as the BHF turns 60, we want to encourage others to lend their support too, to help the charity achieve its ambitions for the next 60 years.”
James Jopling, Head of BHF Scotland, said: “Since the BHF was established, our research and campaigning have contributed to the annual number of people dying from heart and circulatory diseases in this country falling by half. This is something we can be extremely proud of.”
To find out more visit www.bhf./org/uk/birthday