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Sahara Desert challenge

Fearless foursome discovered true adventure in the awe-inspiring Sahara Desert

Fearless Solihull residents discovered true adventure in the awe-inspiring Sahara Desert.


On 09 November, Sharon Harkin, Tracey Pettigrew, Austin Bennett and Anthony Monaghan started their journey to Morocco to take part in an awe-inspiring Sahara Desert adventure, raising money for local Charity, The Lily Mae Foundation. The Lily Mae Foundation was set up by parents, Ryan and Amy Jackson in 2010 following the devastating loss of their daughter Lily Mae to Stillbirth at full term. The charity supports Parents and Families who have suffered the loss of a baby to Stillbirth, Neonatal Death or Medical Termination.

The five-day trek covered 100km passing through Morocco’s forbidding landscape punctuated by peaks, gorges, dunes and oases. At night the trekkers sleep under Africa’s star strewn skies and enjoyed traditional Berber hospitality. The gruelling challenge was The challenge went beyond the Jebel Saghro region, starting on the Maider El Kbir plateau, before ascending Jebel El Mrakib, and admiring the stunning views. Walking through palm gorges, the route joins the dry Rhris River and heads towards an oasis of tamarisk trees. The final days were spent trekking along the Tikertouachene River, before celebrating a successful end to the challenge in Ouarzazate.

Sharon Harkin said “It was a privilege to work on behalf and alongside the Lily Mae Foundation to help raise so much money and awareness for the fantastic work they do. The training and the fundraising became such a focus that it was only when we got to the desert that the true enormity of what we were doing hit us. The memories of the views, the terrain, the humble Berber people who took such good care of us, and the simplicity of life in a world so far removed from the one we inhabit will stay in my memories forever.’

Austin Bennett said “life changing experience doing Sahara trek with like-minded people giving time to worthy charities. A reality check to say the least!!!” Tracey Pettigrew said “The vastness of the landscape is what I will take with me. Staring out at dunes which reached as far as the eye could see in every direction. Truly awesome!”

The group raised over £12,000 for The Lily Mae Foundation. A huge amount of money that will continue to help the charity to provide its support to those parents and families who have suffered the devastating loss of a baby to stillbirth, neonatal death or medical termination. Ryan and Amy Jackson said “a truly remarkable and emotional challenge that has been completed by such a humble group. From the moment we met the group you could see the determination to succeed and their interest in the charity and how much their challenge to support the families who suffer the loss of a baby meant to them. We appreciate the amazing support that these guys have shown!”

Skydivers free fall in memory of lost babies

Tuesday 02 July saw 11 brave individuals skydive in memory of lost babies.  Anthony, Karl, Shona, Liam, Alison, Amy, Keri, Megan, Luke, Ellie & Hannah took to the skies over Northamptonshire and bravely leaped from a plane as part of a tandem skydive.  The bravery shown by all was amazing and collectively they raised over £7,000!!  An amazing amount of money that will further support the Foundations work with Bereaved Parents and their Families following the loss of a baby.  From all of us at The Lily Mae Foundation, Thank you for your tremendous support!

Kacie creates ‘Bows for Boxes’ legacy in memory of her stillborn baby brother

Kacie creates ‘Bows for Boxes’ legacy in memory of her stillborn baby brother


We were blown away when we heard that 9 year old Kacie had chosen to raise money for us following the loss of her baby brother, Jacob, to stillbirth on 07 January 2015. Kacie was only 5 when Jacob passed away.

In April 2019, Kacie came up with the idea ‘Bows for Boxes’ where she made hair bows and sold them to her school friends and teachers for £1 per bow.  She set herself a target to sell 100 bows.  She smashed this target and within 5 days she had sold 109 bows.  Kacie continued to sell the bows throughout the rest of the month and made an amazing total of £243!!!

We would like to say a huge thank you to Kacie for raising money in memory of her brother and donating it to the charity.  Kacie has asked for the money to be put towards memory boxes for other families.  We are sure that Jacob will be very proud of his big sister and what she has achieved in his memory.

Amy and Ryan were delighted to attend Kacie’s school on 11 June 2019.  Kacie had no idea that they were coming to the whole school assembly to present her with a thank you letter and certificate of appreciation.  It was brilliant to see such a proud smile on her face.

Helping hand by customers at the Heart of England Co-operative Society

A charity which provides support for families dealing with the loss of a stillbirth, neonatal death or medical termination has been given a helping hand by customers at the Heart of England Co-operative Society.

Shoppers in the Coventry and Balsall Common branches of The Co-operative voted for The Lily Mae Foundation to receive £2,500 from the sales of 5p single-use carrier bags over the past six months.

It was one of 15 charities from across the Society’s trading area of Coventry, Warwickshire, south Leicestershire and Northamptonshire to receive a share of £25,000 from the sales.

Ryan Jackson, who set up the Balsall Common charity with wife Amy, after their daughter Lily Mae was stillborn in 2010, said: “Although we are a fairly small charity we have people from all over the country who contact us for help.

“A large part of the work we do is providing hospitals and families with a memory box containing practical items such as clay print kits which enable us to take the prints of a baby which we then transfer on to a silver item of jewellery. We also provide teddy bears and a scented candle, to help evoke a memory, and a book, trinket boxes and other practical items.

“We also donate cuddle cots to hospitals, cold mattresses which help parents spend more time with their babies.”

Ryan said the money from the Society will help to further extend its work, with the launch of a new campaign, Siblings Grieve Too, helping to bring bereaved siblings together to explore their needs. The Lily Mae Foundation is working with national charity Child Bereavement UK to give its clients specialist support.

Ryan added: “We would like to thank everyone who voted for us to receive a share of the money from the Heart of England Co-operative Society.

“The money will allow us to continue developing the work we do.

“And while the money is fantastic, the exposure of the charity is equally key and has been worth just as much to us. To know people are learning about us every day and appreciate the work we undertake every day is invaluable.”

With the second highest number of votes in the Coventry area, the YMCA received £1,500, while the Coventry Boys and Girls Club received £1,000.

The Society is among thousands of retailers operating a government levy introduced in October 2015 to reduce damage to the environment.

It followed statistics released by the government which revealed that shoppers used more than 7.6 billion single-use plastic carrier bags in 2014, equating to 61,000 tonnes, or 140 bags for every person in Britain.

Further research undertaken on behalf of the government revealed the average household contained some 40 carrier bags around the home, while the number of bags dished out by supermarkets continued to rise year on year in the five years to 2014.

Bereaved Siblings take part in the 1st Junior Wolf Run

Sunday 02 June 2019 saw 8 Junior Wolf Runners (Accompanied by their parent/guardian) take part in the 1st Junior Wolf Run 2019.

A huge well done 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼 to our Junior 🐺 The WOLF RUN participants and their parents/guardians for completing the first ever #wolfrunjunior#wolfrun in memory of their baby siblings and part of our #SiblilgsGrieve2 Campaign.

Between them they have raised over ⭐️ 💕💙£2️⃣0️⃣0️⃣0️⃣💙💕 ⭐️ An amazing amount of money that will go towards sibling packs for hospitals as well as unique support days/sessions following the loss of a baby brother or sister!


The children and adults were running in memory of:


Jack and Sean running in memory of ⭐️ Daisy and Georgie Casey ⭐️

Dean, Saskia, Stuart, Zackary and Ursula running in memory of  ⭐️ Sienna Diane Lomas ⭐️

Taylor, Jayden and Tim running in memory of  ⭐️ Lanie Star Eley ⭐️

Suki and Jaya running in memory of  ⭐️ Keira ‘Rocket’ Kaur Bhullar ⭐️

James and Zac running in memory of  ⭐️ Annabelle Rosie Spittle ⭐️

And all other babies gone too soon 💕💕


#LilyMaeDay2019 is a huge success

#LilyMaeDay2019 held on 07.02.209 (Lily Mae’s 9th Birthday) is a day that so many can be proud of.

Organised to encourage individuals and businesses to come together and raise vital funds and awareness for baby loss, Lily Mae Day 2019 did not disappoint!

The aim was to spread awareness of the charity and its significance in helping families with babyloss. With the help of the fundraising packs, individuals and businesses were encouraged and supported in creating their own fundraising events. Pushed through the use of social media, #LilyMaeDay2019 was a huge success, raising a staggering £6676.41 thanks to the
efforts of every individual and business that participated.

The Lily Mae Foundation supports thousands of parents and families who have lost a baby to stillbirth, neonatal death or medical termination. Support groups, one to one counselling as well as memory boxes are part of the services that the charity offers to help and bring awareness.

With the hundreds of people who participated, the events consisted of ‘how many balloons can fit in a car’ by Guy Salmon Land Rover Coventry, Fitness boot-camp by JR Fitness and Performance, as well as bake sales. The event also included challenges, such as a sponsored beard shave by Trustee Geoff Heaps, ‘wear it purple day’, and a ‘bring a teddy to school day’. Silent auctions, coffee mornings, arts & crafts, as well as a Facebook Live Stream performance by Coventry University Gospel Rhythms Choir were amongst the many fundraising activities conducted as part of the Lily Mae Day 2019. After the success of Lily Mae Day 2019, we hope to make next year bigger and better.


Speed One Sports

Speed One Sports become merchandise and apparel sponsor

The Lily Mae Foundation is delighted to be partnering with Speed One Sports as our Official Clothing & Merchandise Supplier.

Speed One Sports was established in 2002 with the company’s primary purpose being to provide branded clothing, equipment and merchandise whilst ensuring the delivery of quality products with personal attention to detail.

Ryan Jackson, Managing Director and co-founder of The Lily Mae Foundation said “We are delighted to be partnering with Speed One Sports as our clothing and merchandise supplier. The fundraising events that we as a charity run throughout the year will enable us to supply and offer quality products to our supporters. Through working closely with Speed One Sports we are confident that our partnership will really highlight the personal attention to detail required for not only charity run events but also events run by our supporters.” 

Tony Di Ponio, Director of Speed One Sports said, “We are a family run business and this is a charity close to all our hearts. We’re very proud of our support to local charities and I’m particularly enthusiastic about this partnership and what both organisations can achieve through working closer together.”



Walsall FC

Bucket Collection at Walsall FC vs Coventry City FC

A big Thank You to all those at Walsall FC Official for enabling us to hold a recent Bucket Collection at The Banks’s Stadium.
The Collection raised a fantastic £407.59 in support of our work with parents and families, living locally, who have lost a baby to Stillbirth, Neonatal Death or to a Medical Termination.
Thank you to all those Saddlers and Coventry City fans who very kindly and generously donated in support of our work.

Guy Salmon team

Guy Salmon Jaguar Land Rover give up time for #localcharitiesday

Staff from Guy Salmon Jaguar Land Rover gave up their time for #localcharitiesday on Friday 14 December 2018 to help us make Memory Boxes for bereaved parents and their families.  General Sales Manager, Matt Welch and his team have been fantastic supporters of The Lily Mae Foundation for the last 3 years.  They have provided main sponsorship for our Golf Day and Dinner Dance as well as providing the lead car for The Balsall Common Fun Run 2017.

A huge thank you to the following staff members.

Richard Curtis
Karen Renstead
Liam Hayward
Daniel Turner
Chan Singh
Seannie Bromell
Harry Nottage
Adam James
Matthew Welch

B & M Waste Servies truck pull

B & M Waste Services truck pull 2018

Family-run waste management business, B&M Waste Services continue to demonstrate their commitment to the communities they service with their latest initiative; the Annual Charity Truck Pull. The first winners of this innovative new challenge was Team ‘Wirral 2’ who have won a donation to their depot’s charity, The Hive On-Side Youth Zone.

With teams of 8 made up of B&M staff from each depot, the challenge was to pull a famous B&M Waste REL truck – weighing a whopping 14.7 tonnes – 20m in distance. The team to do it the fastest time secured a £500 donation for their depot’s charity, £400 for second place, £300 for third place and £250 to each of the other teams’ charities for their efforts. On behalf of The Hive, Team Wirral 2 managed to complete the feat in just 15.73 seconds.

With B&M Waste depots across the country, the charities were varied but all focused on supporting children and young adults in some way:

Team Wirral 1 supported Claire House Children’s Hospice and secured second place with a time of 17.37 seconds. Jessica Campbell, Partnerships Manager for the hospice, said: “B&M Waste’s charity truck pull was an amazing idea; we loved cheering on our Claire House team and we think they did an incredible job! We absolutely love our partnership with B&M Waste, and we are so grateful for their ongoing support. The number of children coming to Claire House has risen by 84% in the past 6 years and we are getting to the point where we risk having to turn families away. Funds raised from truck pull will help Claire House reach every child and their family who needs hospice care and support”.

Team Leeds took on the challenge for Children’s Heart Surgery Fund and came third with a time of 17.62 seconds. Ellie Brown, Fundraising Manager for the Leeds-based charity commented; “It was such a pleasure to be included in the B&M Waste Truck Pull event. Such a fun and different event – what a great idea! It was great to see the team get stuck in and I was impressed by how quickly the Leeds team managed to pull such a massive truck!! Thank you so much for your continued support of Children’s Heart Surgery Fund – your support enables us to continue supporting hearts for life”

Team Birmingham took part on behalf of The Lily Mae Foundation, pulling the truck in 19.66 seconds. Founder and Managing Director for the charity, Ryan Jackson, said; “It was a privilege to be able to attend the truck pull in Birmingham. The team were brilliant and are really helping to raise awareness of The Lily Mae Foundation and the work we do with Bereaved Parents and Families following a Stillbirth, Neonatal Death or Termination for medical reasons.”

Team Manchester was lucky with two teams backing Childhood Tumour Trust, the first time was 21.14 seconds and the second coming in at 21.81 . 8 year old Jacob, the charity’s mascot and sufferer of NF1 – the condition the charity aims to provide support for to children and families – was given a special medal for supporting his team. He said “It was ace! I loved sitting in the truck and cheering for my team. I love my medal – it’s the first one that I have ever got”.

And finally, Adam Mellor, CEO of The Hive said: “The Hive are absolutely delighted to be crowned the winners of the inaugural B&M Waste Truck Pull Challenge. The backing that we have received from B&M Waste since the Hive opened last year has been nothing short of phenomenal, the company have believed in us from the start and without them we wouldn’t have been able to support so many vulnerable young people in our communities. Their initial generous funding has been extended to allow us to open an incredible sensory room, and we are so grateful for this vital resource, which allows us to integrate users with additional needs into life at The Hive. The way that every single member of the B&M Waste team has got behind The Hive has been truly humbling, and this win really is the icing on the cake. Thank you so much to everybody involved in this fantastic event!”

Managing Director for B&M Waste, Neil Curtis, said; “The Charity Truck Pull is a fun and innovative way to raise money for all of the charities that B&M Waste supports. I’m really proud of all the teams for getting involved – it’s no easy feat! And congratulations to Team Wirral 2 on their victory for The Hive!”

Take a look at a video of the winning team hitting the 20m mark here!