Fundraising FAQ’s

Fundraising FAQs

Thank you so much for choosing to raise funds and awareness of Somerville Heart Foundation. Read on for some information about the charity to help you spread the word and please get in touch if you have any questions.

What does Somerville Heart Foundation do?

We support people who were born with a heart condition to live longer, healthier, happier lives. We do this by providing mental health counselling, patient support groups, a helpline, leaflets, events and much more. Visit our About Us page for more on what we do and our services page for more detail on the support we offer the CHD community.

We rely on donations and fundraising to be able to support those born with Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) with support on topics such as:

  • Travel, including insurance
  • Benefits
  • Work, including employment law
  • Starting a family, including adoption
  • Contraception and sex
  • Life insurance
  • Transfer from child to adult services

What is your registered charity number?

Somerville Heart Foundation is a registered charity in England and Wales No. 1138088 and a registered charity in Scotland No. SC049673

What is CHD?

Congenital Heart Disease (although some people prefer the term defect) is used to describe a structural abnormality of the heart, present from birth. This type of heart condition is not acquired.

How many adults have CHD?

An estimated 250,000 adults in the UK.

Is CHD the most common birth defect in the world?

It is the most common structural birth defect. Approximately 1 in 10 babies is born with CHD.

Who set up Somerville Heart Foundation?

Professor Jane Somerville established the Grown Up Congenital Heart Patients’ Association (GUCH PA) in 1993. In 2012, we renamed it in her honour. Professor Somerville remains our Patron and Founder today. In January 2022 we announced a change of name to Somerville Heart Foundation to better reflect our work and that we put hearts at the centre of all we do.

What is the mental health impact of living with CHD?

Whilst congenital heart disease is a physical disorder, the impact on mental health is often greater. Needing regular specialist follow up means always thinking of yourself as a patient and living with an incurable disease is a burden on the mind – our Mental Health and Wellbeing Counselling offers a lifeline in times of need.

Through our daily contact with patients, work with other agencies and research we know that very high numbers of people with CHD also struggle with poor mental health. Depression, anxiety, panic attacks and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are commonplace.

Isn’t there government funding for things like this?

No. We receive no government funding so rely solely on donations to provide our vital services. NHS provision of psychological support to CHD patients can be patchy and under-funded. Through our work we are able to bridge gaps in support and make a direct, positive impact on patient lives. Although our services are free to access, they are not free to run. All donations make a real difference and help us deliver and expand essential services.

How can I help?

Regular giving: A regular gift of £20 per month would help us reach more of the estimated 250,000 adults living with Congenital Heart Defects (CHD) in the UK and help them get the most out of life.

Fundraising: We have places in a number of runs and challenges each year. For details, please see: https://sfhearts.org.uk/get-involved/events/

Or perhaps you have a different fundraising idea – we’d love to hear it! Get in touch with us for your free fundraising pack.

Online Shopping: Explore our range of products at www.sfhearts.org.uk/shop/ including pens, cards and pin badges. You can also raise funds for us by shopping online through EasyFundraising and Amazon Smile: www.sfhearts.org.uk/other-ways-to-give/

Corporate support:  If you work for a business that would benefit from some excellent employee engagement opportunities, please get in touch with us.

Sign Up:  You’ll need to sign up to access our support and resources including our quarterly newsletter packed with inspirational stories and opportunities to get involved. It’s free to join us, just head to: https://sfhearts.org.uk/sign-up/

Spread The word: Please follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn in and Instagram. Raising awareness of CHD and our work is as important as raising funds.

Contacts: Do you work for a company that might be interested in a corporate partnership? Could your office sell pin badges, pens or other items in reception? Please get in touch!