A local dad from Castle Bromwich has been named this week’s Charity Champion after raising over £1,000 for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity.

Father of three, Sam Steele, took on Birmingham’s 10k to raise vital funds for the Children’s Hospital which cared for his son, Leo, earlier this year.

When Leo was born, he was diagnosed with a heart defect called Transposition of the Great Arteries (TGA), which meant the vessels carrying blood from his heart to his lungs was improperly connected. At just three weeks old he underwent life-saving open heart surgery at the Children’s Hospital.

Sam said: “We spent five weeks in the Cardiac Unit, four weeks in Intensive Care and then a further week on Ward 11 before Leo was allowed home.

“Every single member of staff was brilliant, not only did they give Leo amazing care but also cared for our whole family as we were all worried and anxious.

“I wanted to start fundraising to give something back to the hospital and the staff who helped save my son’s life – they are the reason he is home with us now.”

To show his appreciation for the hospital, Sam signed up to the Great Birmingham 10k run and chose Birmingham Children’s Hospital as his charity. 

Sam was over the moon when his amount reached the £1k mark, he added: “I can’t thank my family and friends enough for all of their support. They all now know how special Birmingham Children’s Hospital is and wanted to support my challenge.”

Leo is now at home and doing really well. He is still under the care of the hospital’s Cardiac Team but as an outpatient.

Miranda Williams, Public Fundraising Manager at Birmingham Women’s Hospital Charity, said: “We’re so pleased to hear Leo is doing so well and we’re incredibly grateful to Sam for choosing to say thank you by supporting our charity at the 10k.

“The £1,200 that he has raised will help our hospital fund vital equipment which will mean our children and families get the best possible experience while they are with us.”

If you’d like to follow in Sam’s footsteps and run for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity in the Half Marathon in October, visit www.bch.org.uk, email [email protected] or call 0121 333 8506.