One brave Sheffield man has tackled heights of 15,000 feet and freefall speeds of up to 120mph in memory of his much-loved niece Zainab.
Naz Makram (37), who lives in Earl Marshall Road, is one of several people who recently jumped out of a plane at Hibaldstow Airfield to raise funds for Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice, the South Yorkshire charity that cares for children and young adults with life-shortening and life-threatening conditions.
Naz took the plunge in tribute to his niece Zainab Latif, who passed away in 2010 at the age of seven after being diagnosed with Congenital Merosin Deficient Muscular Dystrophy when she was just six months old.
Nax said: “Zainab was talkative, beautiful and a lovely child. As it’s seven years since she passed away, I really wanted to do something in her memory. I have four sisters including Salma, Zainab’s mum, and two of our sisters have already skydived for Bluebell Wood, so it was definitely my turn. The skydive was an excellent experience. We were trained before we went up so we knew what to expect, but it was the best time. I would 100% do it again.”
Salma said: “Zainab was unable to do things independently and completely depended on me for all her care needs. In 2008 I was introduced to the community nurses from Bluebell Wood. I was a little reluctant about the whole hospice idea and had no idea what to expect. After much persuasion I went to visit and loved what I saw. It had a very homely feel and the services offered to Zainab and our family were great. They truly looked after the whole family and recognised all our needs.
“Zainab used to call Bluebell Wood her holiday home. The house gave her the independence she wanted. She felt part of the family there, as did we all. I have nothing but happy memories of Bluebell Wood and I will never forget how happy they made my Zainab. I will be forever indebted to them. They are all truly amazing.”
Bluebell Wood Events Organiser Jo Berry said: “We’d like to say a big thank you to Naz and all our courageous skydivers who are prepared to go that step further to do something special for Bluebell Wood and the 250 families we support. Every penny raised makes a big difference, helping us to offer a wide range of services including end of life treatment and care, music therapy, counselling, sibling support groups and home visits.”
Bluebell Wood’s next Skydive is on Saturday 6 August and there are still a few places left. To book a place please contact Jo Berry at firstname.lastname@example.org