A Folkestone family is giving Santa a helping hand this year by raising money for a hospital’s children’s ward.

The Knight family is collecting donations from people who visit their Christmas lights in Canada Close, and will give them to East Kent Hospitals Charity to benefit Padua Ward at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford.

Last year they raised hundreds of pounds for the hospital’s critical care unit, as a way of thanking staff for saving daughter Jade’s life when she contracted Covid-19.

Paul Knight with just a few of the decorations

Jade, 30, said: “Last year it was very personal because I had been ill, but this year we wanted to do something to particularly benefit children.

“There is a lot in the news about sick children and we thought raising money would be something we could do to help improve their experience.

“If we can help buy some toys and games for the ward it could help them feel better, particularly if they are in hospital over Christmas.”

The family always decorate their house with festive lights and have previously raised money to support a local homelessness charity and other good causes.

Dad Paul starts assembling the light display in September, and it is lit up throughout December, from around 4.30pm to 9pm.

Jade said: “Times are tough for people at the moment and we’ve noticed it is a lot slower than it has been in the past but it’s good to see people smile when they see the lights.

“We’re giving every child who visits a gift, whether they make a donation or not, and we just hope to bring some festive cheer with our lights.”

Senior charity officer Dee Neligan, from East Kent Hospitals Charity, said: “We are so grateful to the Knight family for choosing us to benefit from the donations they collect again this year.

“Even a small amount really will make a difference to some of our youngest patients and I know the team on Padua Ward will be delighted to be able to buy some new toys and gifts for the children.

“This is a lovely time of year with so many people thinking of our patients and staff, and we really do appreciate every single donation.”

By Ed

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