Grateful patient says thanks with Christmas hampers

Three men with Christmas hampers next to a Christmas tree on a hospital ward

Sufyan Patel, right, and his father Yakub gift Christmas hampers to one of the Cardiac wards at Blackpool Victoria Hospital. Also pictured is hospital Imam Ashfaq Patel

Patients suffering cardiac problems at Blackpool Victoria Hospital have been treated to a selection of hampers thanks to grateful patient Sufyan Patel.

Sufyan, 41, suffered a heart attack at the beginning of December and was a patient at the Lancashire Cardiac Centre for four days. During that time he noticed some patients didn’t receive regular visits, so once he was discharged he set about making up hampers to give to the patients.

With the help of his wife, Hamida, their two children Adnaan, 11, and Mohammed, seven, and his father Yakub, they created the hampers of food and treats, and have delivered them to Ward 37 at the hospital.

Sufyan, who lives on Shear Bank Road, Blackburn, said: “It’s heart breaking to think that so many older people say they haven’t spoken to a friend, neighbour or family member for more than a month. I find that extremely difficult to comprehend as my culture and religion teaches me to look after the elderly and keep in constant contact with your parents and loved ones.

“My four-day stay at Blackpool Victoria Hospital highlighted this to me and it really saddened me as I was being visited by up to 10 to 12 people daily, but at the same time some patients had no visitors.

“I found that extremely distressing and I felt I needed to combat this by providing companionship, advice and support for older people facing later life alone.”

Sufyan, who is recovering well, and his family received support from Brookhouse Development Community Group and Blackburn United Football Club for the hampers.

They were received by the ward and representatives from the Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Trust’s charity, Blue Skies Hospitals Fund.

Head of Fundraising and Voluntary Services, Caroline Scholz, said: “As well as donations of money, Blue Skies often receives gifts in kind – especially at this time of year.

A hamper full of food

One of the special hampers

“These hampers will go a long way in providing an extra comfort to our cardiac patients, which is what our charity is all about. Our thanks go to Sufyan and his family for thinking of those who are without family during this festive season.”

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