Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Summer Fun at W5, Belfast!

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

A great day was had by all at our first summer fun day of the year on Saturday 27th June 2015! We headed down to the Odyssey in Belfast to take on all the different tasks, challenges and activities that W5 had to offer!

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W5 had lots to keep us busy, from train tracks to climbing frames and laser tag to graffitti walls there was plenty to keep the whole family entertained whilst we all got to know each other a little better!


Big thank you to everyone that could make it along on Saturday, we really enjoyed catching up with you all and meeting some new additions to our huge heart family! We have another family fun day coming up on Saturday 22nd August so please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Cathy on 074 36589480 or email; to book your space! :)

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Thank you!

Tuesday, June 9th, 2015

Childrens Heartbeat Trust 2014 Logo


Thank you to the team at for making a very generous donation of £700 to Children’s Heartbeat Trust. This donation will go a long way to help support families in Northern Ireland that have been affected by children’s heart disease.

To find out more about and the charities they support visit

Summer Fun Days – 2015

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2015

We are super excited to share details of our upcoming family fun days this summer and can’t wait to see lots of our fab heart families there!

We will be visiting W5 (Belfast) on Saturday 27th June and The Jungle (Magherafelt) on Saturday 22nd August.   These Summer fun days are open to all the familiy and are a great way to meet other children, young people and families affected by heart disease and living in Northern Ireland. Please see posters for further details and email cathy@childrensheartbeattrust to book!

W5 Poster

The Jungle Poster

2015 Summer Blast!

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

We are thrilled to share details of our 2015 Summer Blast! This trip is exclusive to teens aged 12-16 with heart disease in Northern Ireland and is a brilliant way to get to know other people your age that are also living with heart disease and take part in some fantastic outdoor activities during our overnight residential! To book, contact

Summer Blast

Stormont APG Event ‘A New Children’s Heart Centre for Northern Ireland’

Wednesday, May 20th, 2015
©Brian Thompson Photography

MLA’s and speakers at the event (L-R) Sarah Quinlan from the charity, Joanne Dobson MLA, Tracey Wall from OLCHC, Robin Swann MLA, Dr Frank Casey, Stephen Agnew MLA and Daithi McKay MLA.






©Brian Thompson Photography

Heart Kids and siblings at the APG event in Stormont




Childrens Heart Centre needed to ensure a strong future for childrens heart services in Northern Ireland.

A stand alone Children’s Heart Centre is key for the delivery of care for children with congenital heart disease, that was the message delivered today to MLAs at the NI Assembly All Party Group on Congenital Heart Disease. The plan for a Children’s Heart Centre for Northern Ireland has been developed by the Children’s Heartbeat Trust, who presented drawings of the proposal to the members at Parliament Buildings as part of Heart Week, the annual awareness week for congenital heart disease.

Attendees of the event heard from Tracey Wall, Divisional Nurse Manager at Our Lady’s Hospital, Crumlin who spoke of the benefits of a similar centre in Dublin, while Dr Frank Casey, Head of Paediatric Cardiology at the Clark Clinic, outlined the plans and the need for a NI Children’s Heart Centre.

The Children’s Heart Centre would develop and enhance the cardiology expertise and care that a child living with congenital heart disease needs, other than surgery. It would house a dedicated outpatients, facilities, services, training and support that cannot currently be met within the confines of the hospital at the moment.

Speaking at the event, Sarah Quinlan, Chief Executive, Children’s Heartbeat Trust, said: “The paediatric cardiology service in Belfast now needs investment and development. Families of children with heart disease have been promised an improved local service and we need to see that commitment being delivered.   A purpose built Children’s Heart Centre in Belfast will allow delivery of a first class care for every child with a heart defect across Northern Ireland, as well as freeing up resources in the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.”

“Our vision for the Children’s Heart Centre encompasses all the care needs that children and their families require other than heart surgery and as they grow up. This will include regular appointments with specialist staff, investigations and tests. We understand that this will require capital expenditure, but this should be recognised as a long term investment in a service that hundreds of children currently access and that needs crucial support and development to maintain its current high standards in the face of losing its surgical element.

©Brian Thompson Photography

©Brian Thompson Photography

©Brian Thompson Photography

     ©Brian Thompson Photography

Ever been Heartbroken?

Monday, May 18th, 2015

Heart Wk Grace

Happy Heart Week! Monday 18th – Wednesday 24th May marks our annual Heart Week, this year we are kicking it off with a bang with our ‘Ever been Heartbroken’ posters and billboards in towns and cities across Northern Ireland. If you see one near you please take a picture and post it on our Facebook, Twitter or Instagram page to help raise awareness of children with heart disease in NI. This is only the beginning – there’s lots going on this week so keep an eye on our Facebook and Twitter to get involved and don’t forget to use our hastags….. ‪#‎niheartstars‬ ‪#‎heartchain‬

Facebook: Childrens Heartbeat Trust

Twitter: @chldns_hrtbeat

Instagram: childrensheartbeattrust

CHT Team :)

Upcoming Information Event ‘A Children’s Heart Centre for Northern Ireland’

Monday, May 11th, 2015

As part of Heart Week the All Party Group on Congenital Heart Disease are holding an Information Event about what the new Children’s Heart Centre for Northern Ireland should look like. With Dr Frank Casey and Tracey Wall from OLCHC speaking this will be a really important and informative event to show exactly what our children’s heart services in N.I need! There are limited places available so let us know if you would like to attend.


Congratulations to all our Marathon Day participants

Tuesday, May 5th, 2015



We had over 120 people take part in the Belfast City Marathon events yesterday – the fun run, 8 mile walk, relay and full 26.2 marathon. The sun was shining, a cool wind was blowing and the supporters lined the streets to wish them all well. It was a fantastic day cheering from the sidelines and we were proud to see so many of our tshirts and race vests on display. Thanks to each and every one of you for giving your time and energy to raise both money and awareness for the charity. 11 10 9 8 7 2 6 4 3 5 13 14

Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve – Friday 22 May!

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

Heart on Sleeve 2015

Friday 22 May is our annual Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve fundraising day!!

As part of our Children’s Heart Week, on Friday 22 May we hope to see lots of people wearing our fabulous red wristbands. You can help us raise awareness and funds by organising a Coffee Morning, Tea & Cakes, Wear Red to school or work & selling our wristbands!

To get a fundraising pack with posters and the wristbands and boxes please contact us below or email



Best Wishes and Sincere Appreciation to Dr Connor Mulholland on his retirement as Chair

Thursday, March 26th, 2015
Dr Connor Mulholland is pictured here (second from R) with speakers at our 2014 conference

Dr Connor Mulholland is pictured here (second from R) with speakers at our 2014 conference

We are very sad to announce that Dr Connor Mulholland is retiring as Chair of the charity’s Board of Directors. Dr Mulholland has been a driving force behind the charity since its beginning in the early 1980’s and his outstanding leadership and commitment to the charity and our heart families is deeply appreciated.

Fellow Director and former colleague, Paediatric Cardiologist Dr Brian Craig, has below shared an overview of the role and positive impact Dr Mulholland has played both for the charity and paediatric cardiology in N.Ireland.

“In 1976 Dr Connor Mulholland was appointed the very first dedicated Paediatric Cardiologist in Belfast. The early years of his work were devoted to stabilising and making an accurate diagnosis in many ill infants and older children with heart disease. To this end he created a dedicated inpatient facility and held outpatients clinics both at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children and the Ulster hospital in Dundonald.

In 1983 he had the vision to encourage parents to form a support group called Heartbeat and he became a founder trustee. One of Heartbeats first public roles was to successfully lobby Stormont Officials to create a second Consultant Post in Paediatric Cardiology which was appointed in 1986.

The 1980’s saw major advances in diagnosis and treatment for infants and children with heart disease, with the establishment of interventional cardiac catheterisation and a parallel improvement in the range of surgery available and in the outcomes following surgery. Dr Mulholland had the foresight to appoint a clinical psychologist to the cardiac unit which became the springboard for collaborative research projects into the important psychosocial aspects of congenital heart disease. Guided by his desire to improve services for children with heart disease the charity looked to support the major Congenital Heart Intervention Project (CHIP) and the development of telemedicine placing Belfast at the leading edge of using technology to deliver patient care.

In 2003 Dr Mulholland was appointed Chairman of the Trustees of Heartbeat and was instrumental in appointing a full time Executive Officer and overseeing a change of name to the Children’s Heartbeat Trust, to reflect the aims and work of the charity. He provided important support and continuity throughout this period of change as the charity developed to better meet family support needs. Throughout the recent campaigning Dr Mulholland was a determined and vocal advocate for children and families, providing important advice to the Minister of Health.

Throughout three decades Dr Mulholland has encouraged, supported and led the charity through times of political uncertainty and periods of financial austerity in Health Service funding. His voice has at all times been one of reason and he has never failed to support those for whom the charity exists – children and young people with heart disease and their families. As he steps down as Chair this year this is the legacy he with others has created and a vision that we must maintain.