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  1. ITV Report

Family support group being launched for children who require off-island treatment

The Crocker family, with their daughter Grace who had open heart surgery, five days after she was born Credit: Crocker Family

A service to support families when children need medical treatment off-island is being launched.

Family First is being funded by the Grace Crocker Family Support Foundation.

It was founded in 2011 by Sara and Nigel Crocker in memory of their daughter Grace who died of a heart condition in 2009 aged just 11 weeks.

The new initiative aims to bridge the gaps for children who require medical treatment in the UK and are from Jersey.

One of the key priorities of the service is to provide financial support to families from Jersey who need to spend time in the UK whilst their children receive medical treatment.

Sara and Nigel had to move to Southampton for 3 months while their daughter Grace had open heart surgery when she was just 5 days old.

They also had to take their two other young children along with them.

Family First will be run by Cheryl Dolbel and she has met with health professionals, charities, parents and other organisations with an interest in the area.

When a family's already under a lot of pressure and stress, facing uncertainty with what's going to happen with their child in the future, they don't really need that added extra pressure. So the aim of the Family first service is to be able to support in that area.

– Cheryl Dolbel, Family Liaison Manager

The official launch of the new service is in April.