Take a look inside this special Hartlepool haven which has been opened for poorly children and their families

A new haven for the families of poorly children has been unveiled – and the opening ceremony was carried out by four of Hartlepool’s most courageous children.

Monday, 17th May 2021, 9:09 am

The fab four of Noah Griffiths, three, Lacey Robinson, three, Bella Gill, seven, and Dottie O’Keefe, seven, performed the honours to reveal a new Miles for Men caravan where families with sick children can stay on the outskirts of Hartlepool.

The three-bedroom caravan at Crimdon is called Mason’s Smile in memory of Mason Campion, a six-year-old boy who was a friend to the Miles for Men team and who passed away in 2016 after a courageous fight with cancer.

It replaces a previous Miles for Men caravan which had also been a big attraction at Crimdon.

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The opening of the Miles For Men new caravan at Crimdon Dene Holiday Park. Pictured are Micky Day from Miles for Men, Darren Cliff from Ambers Law and youngsters Bella Gill, Connie O'Keeffe, Dottie O'Keefe, Noah Griffiths with mum Abbie, and Lacey Robinson.

Miles for Men founder Micky Day said: “We have had a caravan for the last four years and it has helped hundreds of families, some of whom we have supported and others come from groups we work with,

"We have had families here from all over the country and we have supported them through difficult times. We have met some amazing children.”

Funds for the caravan came from sources including a sponsored climb up the Yorkshire Three Peaks which 25 people did.

Miles for Men worked with Amber’s Law, a project which helps to save lives worldwide in memory of Amber Rose Cliff, who lost her life to cervical cancer at the age of 25.

inside Miles For Men's new caravan at Crimdon Dene Holiday Park.

Match funding for the amount raised came from the Grantscape scheme and Micky added: At the caravan, children can be what they want to be rather than having treatment 24/7.”

The four youngsters who unveiled it have each had their own inspiring story to tell.

Hartlepool Mail readers will remember “little fighter” Dottie who was only four years old when she made the headlines in 2018. She is now 7 and has made astonishing progress.

An outside view of the new Miles For Men's caravan.

Noah has a grade 3 glioma which is a type of tumour which can happen in the brain and spinal cord.

Bella has Down’s syndrome and has had over 100 operations, including dozens to her throat to help improve her breathing including thracheotomys and reconstructive surgery.

Lacey and her family will be the first to stay at the caravan but Micky paid tribute to all the children. “They are absolutely remarkable and this means a lot to these children. They are so courageous and they are relentless with what they have to go through,

"But this caravan can be priceless to them and their families.”

Micky founded the 5k Miles For Men run in 2012 in memory of his father Michael Day senior, who died aged 68 after a one-year battle with throat cancer.

There has been no stopping the town charity ever since.

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