Some Firefighters out of Birmingham have come up with a great idea and gathered around 200 presents to provide to young children who spent last Christmas in the hospital.
Younger or people who just are uninformed may think this is out of the way for Firefighters, but they do a lot more than just put out the fire waves. They are also first responders. That means that they will be on the scene when there is an emergency that the police might be dealing with – sometimes even beating the police to the scene. They also rescue and help find individuals from burning buildings and other emergencies, or treat sick and injured people. They’ve even participated in drills related to equipment use, rescue tactics, and treatment of victims in emergency scenarios.
They do all of that – and more – on top of fighting flames that could have engulfed, even more, had they not been around.
The Coventry team said they had a “great response” to an appeal for games and toys for Birmingham Women’s and Children’s Hospital.
The drive began last Christmas in 2021 by Firefighter Darren Hutchinson whose child, now 6, spent over three months at the same hospital. He felt he needed to help not only his own child but other families as well along with the devoted staff.
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“He’s our only child and we owe our son’s life to them,” he said.
Fellow West Midlands Fire Service Green Watch part Daniel McQuillan came up with the idea of “fill a fire engine” banner to get the local community involved.
In 2021 the goal was simply wanting to fill two engines and Daniel said in spite of the fact that it didn’t seem as though the target would hit the mark, they were still satisfied with the reaction they got.
“A lot of people took part and other watches and firefighters from across the city were also involved which was amazing,” he said.
The community came together and some took boxed presents to the fire engine at collection points located across the city, along with taking gifts directly to the Radford Road Station. Neighborhood firm Farol gave toy work vehicles and Tesco along with Morrisons were among some of the stores who helped contribute.
Firefighters have collected about 200 new presents to give to children who will be spending Christmas in hospital. https://t.co/FLCybFAJ14 #goodnews #positivenews #goodvibes #spreadkindness pic.twitter.com/eqmRr9T89V
— Karin Bellantoni (@KarinBellantoni) December 31, 2021
The pandemic limitations meant utilized or delicate toys were not allowed.
Cameron, his child, presently six, was taken to the hospital when he experienced difficulty walking and examinations found severe blood clots. He was then moved from Coventry to Birmingham.
“They thought it was cancer so it was quite harrowing,” he said.
However, Hutchinson said the family felt fortunate this was not the case and after three eerie years, Cameron is “happy and healthy” again. He added that his son ended up cherishing dinosaurs more than fire engines.
The firemen said it was significant that the children in the emergency clinic had things to occupy them and keep their minds off of being in the hospital.
“It’s about giving something back,” he said. “When you are in that situation you are in the hands of these people and they are so amazing. They are still sitting with the parents and sitting with children when they were supposed to finish at 6pm and they are still there at 8 or 9.”
The team plans on doing another such collection this year in 2022, we wish them the best, and God bless!