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Fundraising father to host 18th charity fundraiser for Wessex Heartbeat

Updated: Dec 14, 2022

Family holding Heartbeat logo

A father who has raised more than £150,000 for Wessex Heartbeat is hosting his 18th fundraiser for the regional heart charity.

Mark Ind, whose son Alex was born with a serious heart condition, will be holding the charity evening at the Novotel Hotel in Southampton on Saturday November 19th. Starting at 6:30pm, guests at the sell-out event will be entertained with an evening of dinner and dancing as well as a charity auction and raffle.

The glittering occasion, which has been postponed for three years due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, will be an exciting reunion of the Heartbeat's loyal supporters, who, through their extensive fundraising efforts, have helped fund initiatives at Southampton General Hospital, such as opening of the Young Adults' Cardiac Ward E2 in 2015, as well as providing important and expensive equipment for the Paediatric Cardiac ward E1.

Most recently, the funds raised have supported the pioneering 3D modelling software project enabling cardiac surgeons to produce models of infants and children with congenital heart disease.

For Mark, fundraising for Wessex Heartbeat stems from his personal experience with the charity, after his son, Alex, was diagnosed with a serious congenital heart condition when he was a baby.

Under the care of Southampton General Hospital, including ongoing after-care support from Wessex Heartbeat, Alex has faced a lifetime of operations. He has survived four bouts of major open-heart surgery at 14 months, at eight and at 17, and most recently when Alex was 20 years old, on May 13, 2019. In his short life, Alex has also undergone two additional major operations, and suffered from sepsis and a mini stroke three years ago.

Mark said "It is because of him, that we have raised these funds to help increase the chances of survival for others, who hopefully like Alex, can go on to live a relatively normal life. Alex himself goes to the gym regularly, plays golf and opens the batting for his local Hampshire League cricket club."
"In the past few months, he has graduated with a 2:1 at the University of Winchester as a Physiotherapist, something he has great empathy with, having been on the receiving end as a patient himself on many occasions."

John Munro, CEO of Wessex Heartbeat said: "The Ind family have gone above and beyond in their fundraising efforts for the charity, and we are in awe of Alex's personal achievements. He is a shining example of what a cardiac patient can achieve when they receive the high-quality care and support given by our incredible cardiac centre here in Southampton."

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