Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Fun on the Farm!!

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

Saturday 30th of August marked the end of summer for Children’s Heartbeat Trust with our last summer family day of 2014 but, as always, we went out in style!!

We had a busy start to the day watching sheep races, animal feeds and even a sheepdog agility display before stopping for a well-earned spot of lunch (and a few sweet treats!) After lunch, we were joined by the lovely Sister Alison to present her with a surprise retirement gift for taking such good care of all our little heart warriors over the past 28 years!

In the afternoon it was straight down to business….we had 10 Clark bears to find to complete our treasure hunt which were maybe a little too well hidden….clearly Clark did not want to go home and to be honest, neither did we!

Overall, we had a brilliant day at Streamvale Farm and we got to put our wellies to good use as we had a bit of a downpour in the afternoon but that did not put us off and it even made the tractor and pony rides more fun!!

Massive thank you to all of our fantastic families that came along on the day, it was great meet new heart families and catch up with the not-so-new!

Finally, we must thank all of the staff, volunteers and of course the animals on the farm for showing us such a good time!!

Group pic Sr Alison grp pic Chicks! Feeding Time Bunny Playpark Katie B & Sr Alison Pony Ride

2014 Summer Blast!

Monday, August 18th, 2014

It is safe to say that teens, volunteers, nurses and staff had a blast during our first teens weekend!  Lorne House proved to be the perfect venue to keep up with a truly amazing group of teens! On day 1 we kicked the weekend off with some great British Heart Foundation workshops that allowed the teens to talk openly amongst their peers and tackle some tricky topics in a friendly setting before going head to head in some teambuilding activities! That afternoon, the group took to the dizzying challenges of the high ropes course and discovered some hidden talent during the archery session which worked up a huge appetite for dinner! After an action filled day and  once everyone had enjoyed some chill out time which included a very impressive song or two by a super talented teen, we relaxed with a film and some munchies including some gorgeous buns handmade by one of our specialist nurses, Tracy! After breakfast on day 2, once everyone had just about woken up from a night full of chatting rather than sleeping  we got to hear from Nadine, Josh and Craig who are 3 of our adults with heart disease. They shared their stories, challenges and experiences with the group and took lots of interesting questions and queries from a very captivated audience! Paul was also on hand to help out with a videography project which allowed teens to give an interview to camera, sharing their thoughts and experiences. Unfortunately, the weekend seemed to end too quickly and before we knew it, it was time to say goodbye….until next time! Children’s Heartbeat Trust are already using your ideas to come up with a teens day out before the end of the year so watch this space!

A HUGE thank you to all of our fabulous teens, volunteer speakers, and to Paul who had everyone striking poses throughout the weekend…….hope he got our good sides! You all provided lots of laughs, shared your stories and formed friendships along the way which made the weekend such a success, we hope you had a blast!!


Teamwork at its best!



Zoe modelling her new Summer Blast T-Shirt!

Zoe modelling her new Summer Blast T-Shirt!


Putting communication skills to the test during team building activities!

Putting communication skills to the test during team building activities!

Agghhhhh don't look down....

Agghhhhh don’t look down….

Grace supervising as she teaches Paul how to use the camera!

Grace supervising as she teaches Paul how to use the camera!

A little bit of girl power during the shapes challenge....

A little bit of girl power during the shapes challenge….

Welcome Cathy, our new Family Support Worker!

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

We are absolutely delighted to introduce our new Family Support Worker, Cathy Dalton.  Cathy is joining the CHT team from Special Olympics Ireland and has lots of practical experience working with families and developing support programmes and projects.  Cathy will regularly be attending outpatients clinics across Northern Ireland and Clark Clinic to meet heart families and coordinate support, so if you see her around, make sure and say hello!

Cathy can be contacted on


T: 074 3658 9480

Cathy Dalton

Register Now! Parents Conference 2014

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

Heart of the Matter Logo

Our Annual Parents Conference is taking place on Saturday 25th October at the ECOS Centre in Ballymena.  We have specialist speakers and clinicians talking about education needs, transition services, Clark Clinic, research projects, inherited cardiac conditions and lots more!

This is a fantastic opportunity to give you the chance to hear about new advances and initiatives first hand and to ask questions.  The event is always very popular to make sure to register early (and avail of the early bird offer) to book your place.

Following on from last year we will be offering childcare provision again this year.  We have up to 20 places free for children to come along too.

Visit our Family Support page to download your registration forms

Looking forward to seeing you all there!


Charity Golf Scramble; Sat 2nd August; Colin Valley GC

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

test pic

Supporting Clark Clinic with sensory resources for heart patients

Thursday, June 19th, 2014
Play Specialist, Gillian Lewis with sensory equipment purchased by the charity

Play Specialist, Gillian Lewis with sensory equipment purchased by the charity

We are delighted to be supporting Clark Clinic with the purchase of sensory toys and equipment for the ward.  Sensory resources can engage, stimulate and soothe sick children at what can be a stressful and anxious time.  We are looking forward to seeing them in use!

June Enewsletter

Thursday, June 19th, 2014


We are looking for an enthusiastic & committed Family Support Worker

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

We have listened to your feedback about our heart families needing more support and services in place to help you through the different issues and problems that arise from having a baby, child or young adult affected by heart disease.  We want to do more to help our heart families, so we are now looking to bring on board a Family Support Worker to help us develop and deliver stronger support services for you…

ROLE: Family Support Worker

LOCATION: Based in Belfast, covering Northern Ireland.

CLOSING DATE: Wednesday 18 June 2014

EMPLOYMENT TYPE: Permanent Full Time


Children’s Heartbeat Trust is a Northern Ireland charity that provides emotional and practical support to the families of children and young people with heart disease.

 We wish to appoint the following post

Family Support Worker

To develop strong support services for local families affected by heart disease in children and young people.

 HOURS: 37.5 per week

Essential Criteria includes 

-       Third level qualification in relevant subject

-       At least 2 years recent experience of working with families in a support service setting

-       Hold a valid driver’s licence and have access to a car.

 For an application pack please email

Children’s Heartbeat Trust reserve the right to interview only those candidates who appear from the information provided to be the most suitable for the job.

We are an equal opportunities employer



Iconic local statues Wear their Hearts on their Sleeve!

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

In a unique way to raise awareness of heart disease in children and young people – the most common birth defect among children born in Northern Ireland – statues across the province were brought to life on Friday 23 May as part of our ‘Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve Day’ with specially designed woollen hearts worn on their sleeves.

The hearts appeared on the statues of literature and sporting legends CS Lewis (East Belfast), Joey & Robert Dunlop (Ballymoney), medical pioneer and inventor of the modern defibrillator Professor Frank Pantridge (Lisburn) along with golfer Nick Faldo (Enniskillen).

Two of Northern Ireland’s most famous peace statues – The Reconciliation Statue at Stormont and Hands Across the Divide in Derry – also wore the hearts as did the Newry Navvy, the Monument to the Unknown Woman on Belfast’s Great Victoria Street, the Flax Spinner in Sion Mills and the Gleaner, also at Parliament Buildings.

The statues wore hearts on their sleeves, designed and hand crafted especially for the campaign by artist Nora Borealis  A big thank you to Nora for the time and effort put into making these amazing hearts!

We would also like to thank the local councils, businesses and public bodies for supporting this campaign to highlight the importance of heart disease in children and young people, including Ballymoney Council, Newry Council, Lisburn City Council, the Department for Social Development, the Department for Finance & Personnel, Lough Erne Resort and Glenbank Estates.”




First Minister Peter Robinson awards our Artbeat winners!

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

First Minister Peter Robinson with the winners of our Artbeat Competition and Sarah Quinlan from the charity.

First Minister Peter Robinson visited our Artbeat Exhibition to present the winners of the Artbeat Competition with their prizes.

Hundreds of children from across Northern Ireland designed and made hearts to be included in our unique exhibition. Their entries were all on display as part of ‘Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve Day’ which took place on Friday 23 May.

Speaking at the prize giving Mr Robinson said, ‘I would like to congratulate all the children who created these bright and beautiful hearts, particularly the five winners.  There is certainly no shortage of creativity in the classrooms right across Northern Ireland and there could be a Picasso or Van Gogh in the making.’

Congratulations to our five winners – Ruby McKenna, Clara Hughes, Jonathan Dawson, Niamh Burns and Hannah Dallas!