Frank Charles, BEM celebrated his 20th annual Christmas toy delivery to children on the Acorn ward at Whipps Cross Hospital on Wednesday 20 December.
Reflecing on this achievement, Frank said: “20 years is a fantastic milestone, and it continues to be a privilege to give back to the children and staff on Acorn ward every year. Over the years i'm sure i've wrapped thousands of presents myself, we've brought over 200 gifts for the children today. My son would have been 36 now and it has been such a joy to be able to honour his life in this way.”
On behalf of us all at Whipps Cross, Thank you Charles. We will continue to support you in your acts of kindness and cheer you on so you can continue to help put a smile on the childrens’ faces and provide pockets of joy during a time that can be daunting for them and their family.
Becca from the play team presents gift to Charles in recognition of his great work
Frank Charles with supporters and donors of the Charity
Get to know Frank
Having established the Frank Charles Give A Gift Appeal in 2004, Frank is dedicated to brightening the hospital experience for children. Frank was inspired by his first son Ashley, who passed away at 23-months from a rare bowel disorder, Hirschsprung’s Disease. He also knows what it's like to be a child in hospital over Christmas, having spent much of his early life in hospital because of the same disease.
In honour of his son, Frank continues to visit the hospital each year despite being diagnosed with Stage 4 Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma and cancer of the bone marrow in 2010. Turning the visits into a year-round project was one of the final items on his bucket list, which became a reality as the Frank Charles Give A Gift Appeal became a registered charity in 2015.