THE Murray Parish Trust has launched a new appeal to raise funds for a dedicated calm space for children undergoing brain surgery in a new iMRI Suite at Southampton Children’s Hospital.

The Big Give Christmas Challenge runs from midday today to midday next Tuesday, December 8. During this time, every donation received by credit or debit card via The Big Give platform up to £18,750 will be doubled by match-funding.

Sarah Parish, Founder of The Murray Parish Trust, said: “Having gone through the trauma of my child undergoing major and urgent surgery, I know this space will make a huge difference for families and children when they are absolutely terrified. We are incredibly grateful to the Reed Foundation, The David Pearlman Charitable Foundation and William Gordon’s Family Charitable Trust for their pledges which form the match-funding pot.”

Every year, 300 children receive life-saving brain surgery at Southampton Children’s Hospital for the treatment of brain tumours, hydrocephalus, epilepsy and other life-limiting conditions and traumas. The iMRI Suite is next generation technology that will fundamentally change the way in which paediatric neurosurgery can take place, significantly improving patient outcomes, and reducing the time spent in paediatric intensive care - a benefit to both the children, their families and the hospital.

Aabir Chakreborty, Consultant Neurosurgeon said: “The iMRI Suite will transform how we perform brain surgery, giving critically ill children the very best chance at life. This area is such an important part - giving a calm space for us to prepare a child for surgery with their family holding their hand.”

The Murray Parish Trust, founded in 2014 by actors James Murray and Sarah Parish in memory of their late daughter Ella-Jayne, is dedicated to the advancement of paediatric emergency medicine across the South of England. They have raised £5 million with Southampton Children's Hospital.