Chalade Hayes, aged 31 and her friend Maddie Collins, aged 27 of Bradworthy are taking up the challenge of skydiving 15,000 feet to support babies that need special care.

Their skydives take place on Saturday 2nd May at Dunkeswell Airfield near Honiton.    Chalade is fundraising in aid of North Devon District Hospital’s charity “Over and Above” to support their Special Care Baby Unit and Maddie is raising her funds for Bristol Children’s Hospital Charity – The Grand Appeal”.

Chalade said “We’ve come up with some crazy ideas over time but this one definitely tops them all.  As people may or may not know our families were both unfortunate enough to have to use Over and Above and The Grand Appeal charity situated in Bristol Children’s Hospital for our little boys; Finley now aged 4 and Riley now aged 2.  I say unfortunate, but without them our boys may not be here today and we cannot thank both the charities enough for saving their lives. So we are going to throw ourselves out of a plane at15,000ft to try and help raise some money to say thank you and hopefully help them save more children’s lives or help towards some life-saving equipment for them.”

“Chalade said “My little boy Finley came into this world 3 weeks early but all was fine, we went home the same day to start our family as a four.    Five days later things quickly became apparent that something was wrong, he wasn’t feeding, sleeping and was very jaundice. We took him to Barnstaple children’s ward and they took blood tests. We waited for the results. We were then greeted by a crash team ready to take Finley away to HDCU they weren’t sure what was the cause of Finley’s problem but surely enough he deteriorated very quickly and his organs started shutting down.  If it wasn’t for the team’s quick response he would have died.

They treated Finley with antibiotics which covered all aspects. We were told Finley’s bilirubin levels were so high we need to prepare ourselves as he may be brain damaged. He was moved into SCBU but they realised he needed more extensive care which couldn’t be done there.  Finley was then vented and moved to Bristol Children’s hospital ICU.

When we arrived Finley was hooked up to his own little bay where he was under 24 hour care. He underwent a lot of tests and scans and after 48 hours and a lumbar puncture Finley was diagnosed with Meningitis and Sepsis. We stayed in Bristol for 4 days and were then transferred back to Barnstaple children’s ward where we stayed for 2 days before being discharged home.

Without the support of our families, friends and the amazing work from the hospitals we don’t know if our little happy funny amazing boy would be here today. I know what we raise won’t cure all sick children or buy all the equipment that’s needed but I hope it at least helps a little bit.   No amount of money will ever be enough to say thank you for saving our sons’ lives but we at least hope it will help.

So please any money you can spare to help other children and families in this situation is gratefully received. Thank you so much for taking the time to read my story.

Over and Above Fundraiser Julie Whitton said “Charlade and Maddie have thrown themselves into their fundraising and any support you can give would be much appreciated.  The money they raise will enable us to purchase much needed equipment over and above that which the NHS can provide – they truly are amazing.”

If you would like to give your support to the hospital charity Over and Above, or want to find out more, please and the charity’s Facebook page or contact the North Devon District Hospital Fundraising Team on 01271 311772 or email

Finley age 4

Finley in SCBU


  • Chalade Hayes, aged 31 and Finley Hayes aged 4
  • Finley Hayes in SCBU


For more information about this press release, call the Fundraising Team in the fundraising office on 01271 311772 or e-mail