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Haverhill Borough to donate match-day profits to a Haverhill charity

The My Blue Heart set ANL-160216-085548001
The My Blue Heart set ANL-160216-085548001

A charity set up by a Haverhill family that lost their 14-year-old daughter to cancer is to receive all the proceeds from the match between Haverhill Borough and Kings Lynn Town Reserves on March 5.

Everyone who attends the Thurlow Nunn League First Division game at The New Croft (3pm) will be invited to pay what they want and a raffle will be held with all the profits going to My Blue Heart.

To help matters, Haverhill Community Sports Association has also waived the bills for the pitch hire and hospitality, worth £180.

My Blue Heart was launched by Shirley and Mic Gower, of Arrendene Road, Haverhill, in March 2013, two years and three months after their daughter Jess, a student at Linton Village College, died of primary bone cancer.

It is the first time Borough and the charity have worked together, and Mrs Gower said: “It is lovely to have the support of Haverhill Borough to help us to increase awareness of our blue hearts and raise funds for bereaved children and young people.

“Jess played football locally when she was younger so we were delighted when Ben approached us about the game.

“It is nice to link back to something she enjoyed.”

The charity gives bereaved people the chance to show others they are grieving by wearing a heart shaped badge in forget-me-not blue with a red heart in its heart and monies raised support other charities that work with bereaved children, such as the Nicky’s Way programme at St Nicholas Hospice Care, CLIC Sargent and the East Anglian Children’s Hospice.

Borough chairman, Ben Cowling, who is Mrs Gower’s brother-in-law, said: “We ran a charity game last year for the Lupus Foundation which was pretty successful and raised £700 for them.

“The whole point of the club is the community aspect and obviously because of our family relationship and the relationship with Jess, it made perfect sense.”

My Blue Heart has raised many thousands since it was formed.

In January 2014 it held a charity ball on what would have the day of Jess’ 18th birthday, raising £10,000 that was split between EACH and CLIC Sargent.

Last year My Blue Heart did a charity art auction at The Apex in Bury St Edmunds, where more than 70 paintings were sold and and just over £4,000 raised.

The charity has also recently funded a new drop in group for 13 to 19-year-olds who have experienced a bereavement. It will be run by Nicky’s Way at the Burton Centre in Haverhill every Thursday during term time, from 4.30pm to 6.30pm.

Mrs Gower added: “One of the things we would like to do with the badges is have it well recognised by other people because it is very difficult to go out and be in the world when you have had a significant loss and it is one of the way so letting people know you won’t be yourself and it’s really difficult.

“It helps them feel better that they are taking the people with them in the rest of their lives and it will work better if more people knew that.”

A match day sponsor is being sought and anyone interested should contact Ben on 07951179017.

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