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Cornish girl's plea for a ITV's 'Place on the Plane'

Cornish girl's plea for a ITV's 'Place on the Plane'

Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 5:53am 13th March 2020. (Updated at 7:31am 13th March 2020)

A mum and her daughter from Cornwall are hoping to take the trip of a lifetime - but are appealing for your help to get them there.

Sophia and her six -year-old daughter, Hollie, are hoping to travel to Florida as part of ITV's Saturday Night Takeaway competition, hosted by Ant and Dec. 

The TV programme is giving away a 'Place on the Plane' to members of the public who are most deserving, to join them for their finale at the Walt Disney World Resort. 

Sophia and Hollie are hoping for people to spread the word to get their place on the place after having experienced a family tragedy, when little Ava was stillborn.

Hollie hopes to get a place on the plane


"Ava Hollie Williams was stillborn on the day before her due date at Derriford Hospital in July 2016.

"I (Ava's mum) had been in to hospital twice during the last few weeks of my pregnancy with reduced movement and we therefore know she was still alive at 39 weeks + 1 day.

"When I went in three days later thinking I was in labour, we were unfortunately given the worst possible news ""I'm so sorry, there's no heartbeat"". Ava was stillborn two days later.

"Unfortunately there has been no cause found for Ava's death and we have since learnt that every day in the UK 15 babies die before, during or shortly after birth."

"When she died and my husband and I were in the hospital together I looked at him and said ""this can't be for nothing".

Sophia Williams, Hollie and Ava's mother

Since this devastating news, Sophia and Hollie have set up a charity 'Ava's Fund' to help raise awareness of the reduce stillbirth rates across the South West. Over the past two and a half year, they have raised £26,000 in Ava's memory.

Sophia said that people had hiked mountains, ran marathons, held events and her big sister Hollie (who is now five), even did a 10 mile sponsored walk on Dartmoor at three years old.

Hollie collecting for Ava's fund

This money has helped to deliver special bereavement care and stillbirth prevention training days for staff at Derriford Hospital and has also been spent on 10,000 'Mama Academy Wallets' and are now being distributed to locally pregnant ladies.

These contain important information and every NHS Trust which has provided them so far has since a reduction in their stillbirth rates.

Currently, around 1 in 235 births in England are stillborn; a figure which is Sophia was surprised to learn. 

"We never realised how many people stillbirth affects... [and] how many could be avoided through better care, education and awareness until it happened to us.

"Even more so, we are incredibly proud to say that because of Ava, and the awareness that has been created in her memory, some babies are here today who may have otherwise sadly not been.

"For example, one lady kept going back in to hospital with changes in her baby's movement, because of Ava's Fund. When her baby was delivered by emergency cesarean, it was found she'd had a hidden infection and she had to be given antibiotics. This precious little girl has recently celebrated her first birthday.

"Another lady who continued to go in with reduced movements found out there was something wrong with the placenta. Thankfully, her baby is ok.

"None of this would be happening if it wasn't for Ava."

Sophia Williams

If you would like to nominate Sophia and Hollie for place on the plane, visit the ITV website here.

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