Mansfield Woodhouse parents hoping to raise thousands for heart charity

A Mansfield Woodhouse family are organising a special fundraising day for a children’s charity which supported them when their six-day-old baby underwent open heart surgery.

Friday, 11th June 2021, 5:04 pm

Rio Oduba had an undiagnosed heart defect when he was born at King’s Mill Hospital last February – despite being a healthy 8lb 10oz and an uncomplicated labour.

And at just five days old, he was transferred from the NICU at King’s Mill to Glenfield Hospital in Leicester where he underwent successful surgery.

Now his parents Luca Smith and Michael Oduba are holding the charity event later this summer to raise money for Heart Link – an East Midlands charity which supports families of children with heart defects.

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Rio is now doing well after undergoing open heart surgery as a newborn.

“We are organising a family fun day to help raise money and awareness for Heart Link children’s charity,” said Luca, 31.

“They help provide support and facilities to children and families of patients undergoing heart surgery and is so close to my heart after what we went through with Rio.

"We are nothing but lucky to have Rio here with us and we are forever thankful and grateful to the surgeons, doctors and nurses at Glenfield Hospital for everything they have done and continue to do for us, so we want to give something back.”

The fun day will be held at Debdale Park Sports & Recreational Club on Debdale Lane on Sunday August 1 and will feature stalls, mascots, inflatables and face painting.

Rio with his parents Luca and Michael.

A number of businesses from the area have come forward to secure stalls and offer raffle prizes, however the couple are hoping for many more to come forward over the next few weeks.

"We have had a great response so far, with a sweet stall, cake maker, wax melts and kids’ book stalls already booked – we want to make it fair so are aiming for only one stall of each type, so we are hoping more will come forward, or to donate raffle prizes.” said Luca.

"One thing we do know is, when Mansfield comes together, we can achieve massive things.”

For more information on the event, click here.

Anyone interested in booking a stall, should email [email protected].

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