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Fundraising father hits the £150,000 mark thanks to 18th charity fundraiser

Updated: May 10, 2023

Mark Ind , whose son Alex was born with a serious heart condition, held the charity evening for 320 supporters at the city centre's Novotel Hotel, with a percentage of contributions also generously donated to Cancer Research and the Saints Foundation.

This year's glittering event, which had been postponed for three years because of the COVID -19 pandemic, raised an impressive £30,000 and was dedicated to the memories of ex-Eastleigh football club Chairman, Roger Sherwood and local businessman Ian Bonnon, who both sadly passed away in 2021 and who were regular attendees and great supporters of Mark's events in previous years.

No stranger to the cardiac charity, Mark and his family have embarked on several fundraising initiatives over the years, including publishing a Lockdown book with a percentage of the sales going towards Heartbeat, a sponsored 10K run, and hosting a charity gala every year, often at a local Holiday Inn hotel, a company Mark worked as a General Manager for over 15 years.

Along with the huge generosity of his fellow supporters, their extensive fundraising efforts have helped to fund a number of initiatives at Southampton General Hospital, such as the opening of the Young Adults' Cardiac Ward E2 in 2015, as well as providing important and expensive equipment for the infant Cardiac Ward E1.

Mark said "To surpass the £150,000 mark is a huge success made only possible by the incredible donations from Heartbeat's fantastic supporters. We would like to give a personal thanks to MC Denis Bundy who, once again , oversaw the evening with musical entertainment from The King Crooner, Lucien de-Laloi, local group, the Dottys, and DJ Steve Clarke. "
"We would also like to say thank you to cardiac surgeon, Nicola Viola who captivated everyone with his presentation on the pioneering 3D heart project, which is already saving the lives of infants with heart defects. Money raised from the event will go towards the continued funding of this incredible project which costs £600 per heart."

With the use of specialist cardiac modelling software doctors can easily scan a cardiac patient's heart, using non-invasive means like a CT scan or an MRI; creating a detailed blueprint of the Heart, which can then be sent over to a 3D printer.

This machine will go on to create an identical plastic model of the heart, offering an in depth look at the heart and any defects. As it is plastic model, access to the sections can be enabled, magnets hold it together but gives an easy view of the Heart and all its parts.

Surgeons can then assess the situation and carry out the surgery with a clearer picture of what needs to be done. This process will help not only the surgical team, but also the families who can take some comfort from the fact the process will assist the surgeon when the operation of their child takes place.

Tina Hawke, Donor Development Manager at Heartbeat said "Money raised from events such as this is crucial in keeping Heartbeat and its reputation going from strength to strength."
"It is always humbling to witness the community coming together to support our charity and all the money raised will be vital in making sure we can help as many people as possible, just like Alex and the Ind family."
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